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CBP spokesman Mike Friel, in announcing the decline in apprehensions, said the agency continued to enhance border security through a “comprehensive approach of implementing innovative programs,” including an expansion of Operation Jump Start.

Operation Jump Start was designed to free up Border Patrol agents for expanded protection along the 1,951-mile Southwest border. The National Guard troops were assigned to build additional roads and fences, add cameras and sensors, conduct aerial reconnaissance and provide medical aid and communications support.

They also performed administrative duties, gathered intelligence from border cameras for agents to act upon, assisted at highway checkpoints and served on entry-identification teams.

Bob Wright, former Minuteman Civil Defense Corps organizer who helped create a new border vigil organization, the Patriots’ Border Alliance, called the decision to pull the National Guard troops “another broken promise by this government.”

“The commitment was for two years,” Mr. Wright said. “The little bit of effort they put into it worked. It was certainly a start to have our border protected. Just their presence is a deterrent. Pulling them out is irresponsible.”