Trump threatens to close the border with Mexico NEXT WEEK

President Donald Trump on Friday threatened to close the nation's border with Mexico - or large sections of it - next week, if Mexico does not halt illegal immigration at once.

As president, Trump has legal authority to close particular ports of entry, but he could be open to a legal challenge if he chose to close all of them immediately, said Stephen Legomsky, a former chief counsel at U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services under Democratic President Barack Obama.

He said several times that it would be "so easy" for Mexican authorities to stop immigrants passing through their country and trying to enter the US illegally, "but they just take our money and 'talk'".

'The sad reality is that we now have a virtual open border for any migrant who crosses with a minor, and our border security enforcement has been reduced to a mere speed bump for migrants on their path to long-term occupancy in the United States, ' he said, adding border officers are being asked to perform an impossible task with no help from Congress.

"If we have to close ports to take care of all of the numbers who are coming, we will do that", Nielsen said.

"They are all talk and no action", Trump said in his tweet.

After arriving in Florida Friday afternoon, Trump said he could close the border to trade for a "long time" and insisting the United States had run out of detention space for undocumented immigrants.

Mexico, meanwhile, said it is bracing for the possible arrival of the "mother of all caravans". "May close the Southern Border!" he wrote then.

Central American migrants, part of the caravan hoping to reach the US border, advance on a road in Tapachula, Mexico, on March 28. US Customs and Border Protection commissioner Kevin McAleenan on Wednesday said "the breaking point" had arrived and his agency was "reluctantly" releasing migrants because of overcrowding at detention facilities.

"Mexico for many years made a fortune off of the USA, far greater than Border Costs".

"We are a great neighbour. We don't in any way want a confrontation with the United States", he said.

St. Ignatius high school students are embarking on a journey to Nogales, Arizona to grow their understanding of immigration and issues surrounding this polarizing topic through a humanitarian trip during their spring break.

A general view shows vehicles queued to cross the Cordova-Americas worldwide border crossing bridge in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico March 29, 2019.

The border agency temporarily reassigned several hundred border inspectors to process migrants, provide transportation and perform hospital watches to keep pace.

Trump in February declared a national emergency to allow his administration to shuffle billions of dollars from the Defense Department for construction of his long-promised border wall.

Mr Trump's latest broadside came one day after the United States, Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador agreed to conduct joint police operations in Central America to improve border security and tackle illegal immigration.

Despite Trump's claims, overall, attempts to get across the border into the United States illegally are down substantially from a decade or more ago.

  • Tracy Klein