Colorado troops among those being sent to U.S.-Mexico border

DENVER -- Troops from Peterson Air Force Base and Fort Carson will be among the troops deployed to the southern border as part of the Trump administration's plan to prevent a caravan of Central American migrants from entering the United States.

Some Colorado troops are already deployed.

United States Northern Command (NORTHCOM) made the announcement Wednesday afternoon. It said the Department of Homeland Security has requested a "range of assistance" from the military to support U.S. Customs and Border Protection.

"This request for assistance will enhance CBP's ability to impede or deny illegal crossings and maintain situational awareness as it contributes to CBP's overall border security mission," NORTHCOM said in a statement.

The mission has been dubbed "Operation Faithful Patriot." President Donald Trump recently said as many as 15,000 American troops could be sent to the U.S.-Mexico border.

NORTHCOM said at least 7,000 troops will be supporting the Department of Homeland Security installations in California, Arizona and Texas. It did not mention any installations in New Mexico. However, it said installations could be added or subtracted before migrants arrive.

The troops from Fort Carson include:

  • Headquarters & Headquarters Company, 4th Sustainment Brigade, 4th Infantry
    Division
  • Headquarters & Headquarters Company, 68th Combat Sustainment Support
    Battalion, 4th Sustainment Brigade, 4th Infantry Division

Those from Peterson AFB include:

  • Joint Enabling Capability Team and Aviation Planner from U.S. Northern
    Command

Both Fort Carson and Peterson AFB are in the Colorado Springs area.

Colorado troops will not participate in law enforcement at the border. Among other things, the troops will help set up temporary housing facilities, food halls, showers, barriers and fencing.

Their primary role will be to support U.S. Border Patrol officers and agents with anything they might need as the caravan from Central America approaches.

The migrants are still at least 800 miles from the U.S. border, where they reportedly plan to seek asylum.

President Trump has made the caravan a talking point during rallies as Election Day nears. He recently referred to the migrants' effort as an "invasion," and said the group includes “Gang Members and some very bad people.” However, the presence of such individuals has not been confirmed.

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