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Ducey sending 150 Az National Guard troops to border, but questions remain

Arizona plans to send “approximately 150 National Guard members” to the U.S.-Mexico border next week, but questions remain about the duties and duration of the deployment.

Gov. Doug Ducey tweeted Friday that his office was working with the Department of Defense and the Department of Homeland Security on the deployment. His office did not immediately respond to requests for further details Friday evening, but a spokesman told AZcentral.com that the federal government would pay the costs of the deployment.

The announcement came two days after President Donald Trump said the military is needed because “the security of the United States is imperiled by a drastic surge of illegal activity on the southern border.” On Thursday, Trump said he wanted 2,000 to 4,000 National Guard members deployed along nearly 2,000 mile border from Texas to California. “We’ll probably keep them or a large portion of them” stationed along the border until a border wall is constructed, he said.

In a tweet Wednesday, the president said: Our Border Laws are very weak while those of Mexico & Canada are very strong. Congress must change these Obama era, and other, laws NOW! The Democrats stand in our way – they want people to pour into our country unchecked….CRIME! We will be taking strong action today.

Ducey is the first of four border governors to respond to Trump’s request to use the National Guard to support the work of U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents. Texas Gov. Greg Abbott has voiced support for the deployment, but the governors of California and New Mexico have not commented publicly.

TucsonSentinel.com's original reporting and curation of border and immigration news is generously supported in part by a grant from the Ethics and Excellence in Journalism Foundation.

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U.S. Army photo

Army National Guard soldiers, members of an entry identification team, watch the U.S.-Mexico border near Nogales, January 2007.