The troops will provide support to U.S. Customs and Border Protection, including a mobile surveillance capability through the end of September, and they will lay about 150 miles of concertina wire between ports of entry, the Defense Department said in a statement.
“Additional units are being deployed for 90 days, and we will continue to evaluate the force composition required to meet the mission to protect and secure the southern border,” the Pentagon said. Acting Secretary of Defense Patrick Shanahan approved the additional border support Jan. 11.
The Wall Street Journal reported Jan. 31 that more than 3,500 active-duty troops would be sent to the border, citing Rep. Adam Smith, D-Wash., chairman of the House Armed Services Committee.
President Donald Trump said the same day that more troops would be sent to the border because of his concern about the approach of Central American migrants in so caravans.
The U.S. sent almost 6,000 troops to the southwest border before the midterm elections in November, but withdrew many of them weeks later.
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