Illegal immigrants storm US border in El Paso, knock over guards amid standoff over Texas law

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A large group of illegal immigrants burst through razor wire and surged towards the border wall in El Paso, Texas, on Thursday in a chaotic scene during which guards were knocked over — just as the state’s anti-illegal immigration law is being held up in the courts.

Video taken by the New York Post showed dozens of adult males ripping away razor wire that was set up by the state and charging past Texas National Guardsmen. They then ran towards a section of border wall where they were blocked from entering further. 

A Texas law enforcement source told Fox News the group consisted of over 300 illegal immigrants, and about 100 adult males rushed the soldiers, and one has been arrested so far for assaulting a soldier. The melee began when one family unit was allowed through. The source said that more arrests are likely coming for destruction of property and assault. 

“Get the f— back!” one soldier can be heard in the Post’s video yelling at the illegal immigrants from the other side of the fence.


A group of over 100 migrants attempting to enter the US illegally rush a border fence Thursday, March 21, 2024.  (James Breeden for New York Post / Mega)

Brandon Judd, president of the National Border Patrol Council, told Fox News Digital that all migrants are now apprehended, and agents were going through video to see who assaulted the soldiers. They will be processed for deportation, but maintain the ability to claim asylum. Texas also has the ability to charge the migrants who assaulted them.

Customs and Border Protection responded in a statement, “There are consequences to crossing the border illegally, and CBP continues to enforce United States immigration laws. Individuals and families without a legal basis to remain in the U.S. are subject to removal, and are subject to a minimum five-year bar on reapplying for admission and potential criminal prosecution if they subsequently re-enter without authorization. No one should believe the lies of smugglers; individuals and families without a legal basis to remain in the United States will be removed.”

It marked the latest flashpoint at the border in a three-year crisis that has seen record numbers of migrants hit the border, with 2.4 million in FY 23 alone. Numbers have dropped since the high of 302,000 seen in December, but there are concerns those numbers could again swell as the summer months approach.

Texas has implemented a number of border security measures to tackle the flow of illegal immigration, most of which have faced opposition from the Biden administration. The razor wire has been cut by federal officials, leading to a lawsuit. Meanwhile, the administration sued over Texas’ deployment of buoys into the Rio Grande.

Migrants storm the gate at the border in El Paso

The migrants burst through the fence and past the Texas National Guard. (James Breeden for New York Post / Mega)

This week, the Supreme Court briefly allowed Texas’ anti-illegal immigration law, which allows police to arrest illegal immigrants, to go into effect despite a legal challenge from the Biden administration. The law was kicked back down to the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, which then blocked it again hours later as arguments proceed on the merits.

The Biden administration has claimed that the law encroaches upon federal responsibility over immigration enforcement. 


“S.B. 4 will not only make communities in Texas less safe, it will also burden law enforcement, and sow chaos and confusion at our southern border. S.B. 4 is just another example of Republican officials politicizing the border while blocking real solutions, White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said in a statement this week.

Migrants storm the gate at the border in El Paso

The migrants are halted by the border wall. (James Breeden for New York Post / Mega)

Texas has argued that it has had to act because the administration is not doing its job to secure the border and deport those in the country illegally.


“Number one, we are facing such dangerous situations. And number two, Joe Biden, through his actions, is violating the laws of the United States of America,” Texas Gov. Greg Abbott said Wednesday.

Texas has said it still has the authority to stop those coming across illegally by using trespass laws. Gov. Abbott’s spokesman, Andrew Mahaleris, told Fox News Digital, “The surge today in El Paso is the direct result of the unsustainable chaos President Biden has unleashed on the border. The Texas Military Department and the Texas Department of Public Safety quickly gained control of the situation and are working to repair the damage. These illegal immigrants committed crimes in Texas, and the Department of Public Safety is under instruction to arrest every illegal immigrant involved for committing criminal trespass and destruction of property.”

Migrants storm the gate at the border in El Paso

The migrants could go no further than the wall. (James Breeden for New York Post / Mega)

Meanwhile, the chaotic scenes at the border will fuel the ongoing debate in Washington, D.C., over how to handle the crisis. The Biden administration has said it needs more funding, resources and reforms to overhaul a “broken” system and has called for passage of a bipartisan Senate package.


Republicans have said no such legislation is needed and that the administration can restore calm by re-enacting Trump-era policies like “Remain-in-Mexico” and wall construction.

“Just in case people are unsure, this is what an invasion looks like,” Sen. Tim Scott, R-S.C., said Thursday.

Fox News’ Griff Jenkins contributed to this report.


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