President Trump will sign a proclamation Wednesday directing agencies to deploy the National Guard to the U.S.'s southern border with Mexico, Homeland Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen said Wednesday.
Details of the plan are still "being finalized," Nielsen said, but deployment will begin "immediately," Politico reports. The president has instructed the Department of Homeland Security and the Department of Defense to work with state governors to send an undisclosed number of troops to "assist the border patrol," which the DHS secretary said would primarily mean aerial surveillance and general support, rather than arresting immigrants or other enforcement efforts.
Previous administrations have called on the troops for increased border security, NPR reports, but how the size and cost of this particular operation compares to previous deployments remains to be seen.
The announcement comes after Trump's call for military action to secure the border "until we can have a wall." The president has ramped up his border-security talk in recent days, after hearing reports of an immigrant caravan that is headed toward the U.S. The caravan is a group of individuals, primarily from Honduras, that is seeking asylum in Mexico and the U.S. to flee instability in their home country.
White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders denied that Trump's decision was related to media reports about the caravan, but a statement from Attorney General Jeff Sessions described the move as exactly that. "The president was clear that this caravan needed to be stopped before it arrived at our southern border," reads Sessions' statement, "and his efforts now appear to be successful."
Read more at Politico.