Dozens of tents have been set up on the US-Canadian border by the Canadian Army in order to “welcome asylum seekers” to the country, with at least 100 soldiers involved in the exercise.
“These [tents] will be used as additional shelters for asylum claimants who are waiting to be processed by the CBSA,” said Judith Gadbois-St-Cyr, a spokesperson with the Canada Border Services Agency.
“The Canadian Armed Forces will have no role in security matters,” said Evan Koronewski, a spokesperson with the Canadian Army.
“Its staff will not participate in law enforcement tasks and will not assist civil authorities in the conduct of their law enforcement duties.”
Last week, the RCMP boosted its presence at the border, setting up a tent and several porta potties. Agents now monitor the crossing at all times.
“We stop them, we arrest them, we check them and then we pass them to our colleague at the CBSA,” explained Erique Grasse, a spokesperson with the RCMP.
Globalnews.ca reports: Since the Trump administration said it was considering ending a program that granted Haitians so-called “temporary protected status” following the massive earthquake in 2010, about 300 people have been arriving at the Quebec border every day.
That’s up from 50 a day in the first half of July.
Hundreds of asylum seekers, many from Haiti, are already being housed in several buildings, including Montreal’s Olympic Stadium.
Montreal Mayor Denis Coderre said the city will continue its efforts to find other temporary housing solutions.
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