- The Washington Times - Wednesday, May 12, 2021

The threat of terrorists sneaking across the border hasn’t risen despite the overall surge of illegal immigrants and a growing number of them who’ve evaded capture, Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas told Congress on Wednesday.

He was responding to prodding after reports that people on the terrorism watch list have been arrested amid the 20-year high surge in illegal immigration.

“We don’t have any evidence that suggests that the threat on the border with respect to foreign terrorists is any greater today than it was last year, the year prior, or the years over the past decade,” Mr. Mayorkas told the Senate Appropriations Committee.

Republican leaders in Congress emerged from briefings at the border in March to say agents had said they were catching people on the terrorism lists.

The claim drew vicious pushback from reporters, including one news outlet that labeled the claims as “notorious immigration lies.”

But weeks later, CBP revealed that agents had, in fact, caught two men in separate incidents, both from Yemen, and both of whom were on terrorist watch lists. Both came during the Biden administration.

The press release was quickly deleted. CBP said it didn’t meet their standards.

Mr. Mayorkas on Wednesday said his department has the terrorist situation in hand.

“The fact of the matter is that we are vigilant in guarding against foreign terrorist influences through all avenues, not just, of course, our land borders but air and maritime,” he said. “That is what we do, and fortunately we have extraordinary capabilities to address it.”

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