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DHS investigating use of leather reins used to push back migrants at the border

Haitian Migrants Photo Gallery
Posted at 4:15 PM, Sep 21, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-21 16:15:05-04

The Department of Homeland Security is investigating aggressive tactics used by Border Patrol agents on migrants.

Images and videos show one of the agents using long leather reins to lash at Haitian migrants at the U.S.-Mexico border in Texas. One agent is also heard taunting a migrant and using profanities to describe Haiti.

Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas said he was horrified by the images.

"Any mistreatment or abuse of a migrant is unacceptable, is against Border Patrol policy, training and our department's values," he said.

Mayorkas said he will let the investigation play out, but added that the department "will address it with full force based on the facts that we learn."

Vice President Kamala Harris also expressed disgust with what she saw in the images from the border.

"Human beings should never be treated that way, and I’m deeply troubled about it," Harris said, adding that supports an investigation into the events.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi also said the acts must be investigated.

"All migrants seeking asylum must be treated in accordance with the law and with basic decency. Any acts of aggression or violence cannot be tolerated," Pelosi said.

The U.S. has moved to expel the thousands of migrants, many from Haiti, that have set up camp in Del Rio, Texas.

Mayorkas said U.S. Coast Guard aircraft is being used to fly them back to Haiti.