House Republicans Press DHS Chief Mayorkas on How ISIS-Linked Migrants Got into U.S.

Alejandro Mayorkas, secretary of the US Department of Homeland Security (DHS), in the East
Qian Weizhong/VCG via Getty Images/Al Drago/Bloomberg

House Republicans on the Homeland Security Committee are pressing Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, as well as Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) Director Christopher Wray, to release details regarding eight migrant men — linked to the Islamic State (ISIS) — who were arrested in the United States after having successfully crossing the southern border.

Last week, as Breitbart News reported, the eight ISIS-linked migrant men were arrested in Los Angeles, California; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; and New York City, New York,by the FBI after they had all gained entry to the U.S. interior via the border.

At least one of the eight migrants was directly released by President Joe Biden’s DHS, reportedly thanks to the CBP One mobile app, which allows migrants in Mexico to schedule appointments for release into the U.S. interior at Ports of Entry along the border.

The FBI later found that the migrant men, all from Tajikistan, had possible ties to ISIS.

In a letter to Mayorkas and Wray. Reps. Mark Green (R-TN), Dan Bishop (R-NC), August Pfluger (R-TX), and Clay Higgins (R-LA) said the “pattern” of potential terrorists crossing the border is “alarming.”

“It is unclear how each of the eight individuals came to reside in the United States, though reports indicate that two crossed the Southwest Border of the United States in the spring of 2023 and one used the CBP One App to schedule an appointment to be screened prior to entry,” they write:

Unfortunately, the unacceptable security failures that have allowed individuals with terrorist ties to enter the United States through the Southwest Border have become an alarming pattern under this administration. On April 3, 2024, the Committee sent Secretary Mayorkas a letter requesting information regarding two separate incidents of ICE releasing individuals who were on a federal terrorist watchlist, at least one of which was due to errors within ICE’s internal database. The Committee’s requests in that letter remain outstanding. [Emphasis added]

Since that letter, the Committee has learned that Mohammad Kharwin, an individual who is also on a federal terrorist watchlist due to his associations with Afghan-based terrorist organization Hezb-e-Islami, was released from ICE custody into the Alternatives to Detention (ATD) program on March 12, 2023. He was initially arrested just two days prior in San Ysidro, California, after having illegally crossed the U.S.-Mexico border. Under the terms of his release, Kharwin was able to apply for work authorization and fly within the United States with no restrictions on his movements, under the sole condition that he was to periodically report to an ICE official over the phone. Nearly a year later, ICE arrested Kharwin in San Antonio, Texas after the FBI provided information that confirmed his membership in Hezb-e-Islami. [Emphasis added]

The Department’s prioritization of catch, process, and release, presents a grave danger to national security. The Committee has repeatedly and forcefully highlighted the security vulnerabilities inherent in the massive influx of illegal aliens at our border, the insufficient vetting of the illegal aliens that the Department releases en masse into the United States, and the unprecedented number of gotaways evading apprehension. The Biden Administration and the Department, however, continue to hide their heads in the sand, ignoring the “blinking red lights everywhere.” [Emphasis added]

The Republicans said they want full details on the eight migrant men linked to ISIS that the FBI has arrested, including all internal government communications regarding the case. In addition, they have asked Mayorkas and Wray for a briefing on their arrests by July 2.

“The arrest of eight men affiliated with ISIS in the interior of the United States is enough proof to show that terrorist organizations are, in fact, exploiting our border to possibly carry out an attack on American soil,” they write.

Since the start of Fiscal Year 2021, almost 400 migrants who appear on the Terrorist Watch List have been apprehended along the border attempting to enter the U.S.

John Binder is a reporter for Breitbart News. Email him at Follow him on Twitter here.


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