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200 migrants turn themselves in to Border Patrol near Sasabe

More than 200 people, including families traveling with children, surrendered to Border Patrol agents Saturday night in five separate groups near Sasabe, Ariz., authorities said. 

The largest group had 129 people, and included people hailing from Mexico, Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras and Nicaragua, and their ages ranged from six months to 56 years old. 

This was the second weekend in a row in which large groups of families, mostly traveling from Central America, crossed into the United States and immediately surrendered themselves to Border Patrol agents in Southern Arizona.

In a news release, a spokesman for the Border Patrol's Tucson Sector said that over a five-hour period on Saturday night, five separate groups crossed near Sasabe, which sits along the edge of the Buenos Aires National Wildlife Refuge, about 60 miles southwest of Tucson. 

Last week, the agency posted on Twitter on Nov. 12 that "over the weekend" 135 people, mostly Central Americans traveling as families, surrendered to agents near Sasabe, in "two different events." 

The agency said that in the fiscal year of 2019, which ran from October 1, 2018 to September 30, 2019, about one-third of all those detained were families turning themselves in to Border Patrol agents. 

In October 2019, Tucson Sector officials said they took into custody 6,352 people, and of those about 2,968 were in family groups or were children traveling without a parent of guardian, and surrendered to agents, he said. 

"The groups recently apprehended near Sasabe are consistent with current Tucson Sector trends," the spokesman said, adding "Groups of family units have shifted from entering west of Lukeville to now surrendering in the Sasabe area."

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The shift in crossings to Sasabe comes as CBP spends millions to construct 30-foot-tall "bollard" replacement walls to the west near Lukeville, Ariz., within the Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument — where dozens of families crossed beginning last September — to the east in the San Bernardino National Wildlife Refuge.

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Around 200 people, traveling in several groups, crossed into the United States near Sasabe, Arizona on Saturday night.


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