WashingtonExaminer reports the federal government has constructed more than 40 miles of wall along the southern border with Mexico since the outbreak of the coronavirus in the United States.
More than half of the additional wall and fencing have been constructed since early February, the Washington Times reported.
The first confirmed case of the COVID-19 virus was reported on Jan. 20.
“Today is not the time to play politics with the lives of U.S. Citizens,” Brandon Judd, president of the National Border Patrol Council, told the newspaper. “Walls have proven to stop illegal entries into the United States, therefore they are an essential law enforcement resource which will undoubtedly help in reducing the spread of COVID-19.”
Federal immigration authorities said they have completed 142 miles of new wall with more than 400 still in the preconstruction phase, and it is expected to be completed by the end of the year.
Last week, the Department of Homeland Security changed its asylum-seeker ‘Remain in Mexico’ policy so migrants will remain there longer because of the outbreak of the virus, the Washington Examiner reported.
President Trump has made securing the southern border a hallmark of his first term in the Oval Office. Citing national security, he banned travel to the United States from China by foreign nationals.
More than 100,000 people in the U.S. have been infected with COVID-19, and 1,500 had died of the virus as of Saturday morning.