Following news that restrictions among the U.S., Mexico and Canada borders would be extended until Nov. 21, immigration officials urged everyone to refrain from illegally crossing any border.
Edgar Ramirez of the Department of Homeland Security at the U.S. Embassy in Mexico said in a statement that the “ups and downs of the COVID-19 outbreaks” forced authorities to extend restrictions among port of entries until mid-November.
“We understand this affects the economic life of residents on both sides of the border,” Ramirez said in the statement. “For that reason, the three governments of North America are searching for a way to reduce or eliminate the restrictions in the future.”
The official, however, did not elaborate details on when such an agreement could take place.
Last week, Congressman Henry Cuellar joined customs officials and leaders of various border cities among Texas and Mexico to discuss the possibility of reopening international points of entries.
Cuellar said the reopening of border crossings for foreigners could be rolled out in phases that would be under federal and local guidance.
However, Carlos Gonzalez Gutierrez, the Consul General of Mexico in San Diego, told Telemundo 20 that the reopening would all happen at the same time.
“That’s a proposal from Congressman Henry Cuellar but the truth is, for now, the extension is all along the border. There is no distinction,” Gonzalez Gutierrez said. “It’s not treated differently in California nor Texas or any other part of the border. I estimate that when they lift the restrictions, we’ll wait for that to be on November 21 for the entire border in general.”
That date would coincide about a week within Thanksgiving in the U.S. The reopening would be based on the number of virus cases in border cities. In part, Ramirez added that “a global pandemic is not the right moment to go shopping, go out for a walk of visit family on the other side of the border. And migrating illegally during these times of the pandemic, and to put yourself in the hands of traffickers, is not the solution but ultimately the worst decision.”
This article was originally posted on NBC 7's sister station, Telemundo 20. To read the original story, click here.