Government agency obliges to open a portal at the private border


The US section of the International Boundary and Water Commission said the barrier was blocking a government-owned embankment road, and the group known as "We're building the wall" has built the barrier on federal lands without permission.

"This is not the wall of the border with which we have a problem," spokeswoman Lori Kuczmanski said. "The problem is that the portal is on a federal property.You can not enter and build a portal on someone's property without asking for anything – especially do not give them the keys and do not you're not going away, it's not okay. "

Representatives of the commission locked the door open Monday afternoon, she said.

"After repeated requests for unlocking and opening the private door, the US Section of the International Commission on Border and Water (USIBWC), accompanied by two agents of the forces of the United States. order in uniform from the Dona Ana County Sheriff's Office, removed the private lock, opened the door, and locked the door while waiting for discussions with We Build the Wall, "said the US section of the commission in a communicated.

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The founder of We Build the Wall, Brian Kolfage, criticized the commission in a series of social media messages Tuesday, accusing the federal agency of having exceeded its authority and asking his commissioner appointed by the president to resign. In a statement to CNN, Kolfage said the lawyers in his group were working on the issue – comparing the situation to a dispute with the city authorities in Sunland Park, New Mexico, which was resolved after the City authorities issued a notice to "stop and refrain" temporarily blocking construction.

"As we have seen with the city of Sunland Park, we will carry it," Kolfage said. "Our lawyers have been working on this issue for weeks and we will take back control of the door shortly."

The dispute We Build the Wall, an organization that has raised more than $ 20 million for the construction of boundary walls during a GoFundMe campaign, against the US section of the International Water and Water Commission, a federal agency charged with the application of boundary and hydrological treaties between the United States. and Mexico.

The commission – which includes US and Mexican counterparts – operates flood control surveys, sewage treatment plants and border posts at many locations along the US-Mexico border, including the US dam near the US border. from the barrier of We Build the Wall. Its American section is headquartered in El Paso, Texas.

"The USIBWC is concerned for the safety of our employees and the infrastructure of the US Dam, which stands next to the private portal," said the US section of the commission in a statement released on its website. "Despite requests from the USIBWC to remove the American Dam gate, the private gate was constructed to route undocumented immigrants to the area of ​​the American Dam. appropriate documentation will be provided for the permit, USIBWC will continue to process the permit application. "

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The American Civil Liberties Union of New Mexico asked the Commission to intervene last week, criticizing the fence for blocking access to Monument One, a historic landmark on the US-Mexico border.

Kolfage told CNN that a private landlord also owns part of the road leading to the monument and has the right to restrict access.

"In the end, access to the monument can be restricted indefinitely by the owner of the private property if he deems it necessary because he owns the road further upstream," he said. .

But Kuczmanski, spokesman for the commission, said that concerns about access to the monument were also taken into account as part of the permit application.

Permits can take up to six months to be processed, she said.

"They lack the paperwork and information we need to make a final decision," she said, including a hydrological study and a report on drainage.

This is not typical for a project to go ahead without a license, she said.

"Usually, everyone is very cooperative and, well in advance, they tell us their intention and we communicate all their plans, specifications and all their documents," she said. "And we say 'yes' or 'no', and we proceed from there."

CNN's Chris Boyette contributed to this report.


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