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Family arrivals surge at US-Mexico border in August

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SAN DIEGO (AP) — More than 16,000 families were apprehended at the border in August, authorities said Wednesday, a dramatic increase from previous months that the Trump administration blamed on legal loopholes and a reversal of a widely denounced policy that separated parents and children at the border.

The number of family arrivals reached 15,955, a sharp increase from July that Customs and Border Protection Commissioner Kevin McAleenan said was one of the highest on record. Families accounted for more than one-third people who were stopped at the border.

He called the increase "a direct response to gaps in the legal framework," adding, "we're not surprised by it, but it's been a very stark trend."

Overall, people arrested or stopped at the border totaled 46,560, up 17 percent from 39,953 in July and up 52 percent from 30,567 in August 2017. Arrests have risen from July to August in four of the previous five years, indicating seasonal factors may be an influence.

The number of people arriving as families increased 30 percent from July to August, outpacing the overall increase.


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