President Trump on Tuesday said that the U.S. will secure the southern border with the military until a wall can be built, calling the move a “big step.”
Trump made the remarks during a meeting with Baltic leaders, where he said he had discussed the matter with Defense Secretary Jim Mattis.
“Until we can have a wall and proper security, we’re going to be guarding our border with the military,” he said. “That’s a big step, we really haven’t done that before, or certainly not very much before.”
Trump did not offer more details, but the move appears to have been at least partly motivated by a caravan of over 1,000 Central American migrants heading toward the U.S. border. Buzzfeed, which first reported on the caravan, said that Mexican officials had not yet attempted to stop the flow.
Reports of the caravan angered Trump, who has sent out a number of tweets threatening to end the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and to cut foreign aid to countries such as Honduras, from where many of the migrants originate.
“The big Caravan of People from Honduras, now coming across Mexico and heading to our “Weak Laws” Border, had better be stopped before it gets there,” he tweeted Tuesday. “Cash cow NAFTA is in play, as is foreign aid to Honduras and the countries that allow this to happen. Congress MUST ACT NOW!”