THE WHITE HOUSE
Office of the Press Secretary
STATEMENT BY THE WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY ON ARIZONA BORDER PATROLS
President Clinton today directed the Immigration and Naturalization Service to immediately send 62 Border Patrol agents to Nogales, Ariz., to combat an unprecedented rise in illegal border crossings there. Sixty-two new agents will begin to report for work on Tuesday, increasing the border force by 17 percent.
The Administration anticipated increases in illegal entries in Arizona this year as a result of its successful crackdown in California and Texas, and is already training 100 new patrol agents to reinforce the Nogales border. But illegal crossings increased so dramatically in January in the wake of the peso devaluation that more agents are needed now.
With the President's action early last week to stabilize the peso, we anticipate that the pressure on the Mexican border will subside.
The agents are being reassigned from Border Patrol operations on the Canadian border and from interior stations in Arizona and other parts of the U.S.