Mexican president slams Texas border troop deployment

Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto condemned Texas Governor Rick Perry’s deployment of troops to the border to curb illegal immigration, calling the move “unpleasant” and “deplorable.”

“It is not only unpleasant, I think it is reprehensible,” Pena Nieto said in an interview with El Universal newspaper published on Friday.

Pena Nieto said the deployment goes against the neighborly ties that have been established with the US federal government.

“This attitude is totally deplorable and does not resolve a problem a problem that we have to face in a joint manner,” he said.

Perry, a Republican seen as a likely candidate for president in 2016, ordered the deployment in July following a summer surge of unaccompanied child migrants at the border.

The first National Guard troops arrived at the border last month.

Perry’s office issued a statement this week saying 2,200 troops had volunteered to fill the 1,000 positions he authorized on July 21.

The surge revived a divisive debate over illegal immigration in the United States, with President Barack Obama taking fire from foes and allies after he decided to delay immigration reform until after November’s midterm elections.

US authorities say they caught more than 66,000 unaccompanied children at the border with Mexico between October 2013 and August this year, almost a twofold increase from the previous fiscal year.

But the number of children traveling alone — most from Central America — has dropped over the summer, from a peak of 10,622 in June to 3,141 last month.

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