Arizona rejects U.S. request to remove border containers

PHOENIX (AP) — Arizona has resisted a federal request to remove the double-decker shipping containers it placed to fill gaps in the U.S.-Mexico border wall, saying it won’t be until the U.S. begins building permanent containers Do. replaced by a barrier.

The Arizona Department of Emergency and Military Affairs followed suit in an October operation. “The containers will remain in place until specific details regarding construction are provided,” the letter to the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation dated 18/18 said. It was signed by department director Alan Clark.

A regional spokesman for the Bureau of Reclamation did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Arizona’s refusal to comment on the recent dispute over immigration policy between the Biden administration and Republican-led border states.

The federal agency told Arizona officials in a letter last week that the containers were unauthorized and violated U.S. law. The bureau also asked not to place new containers, saying it wanted to prevent a conflict with two federal contracts already awarded and two still pending to fill gaps in the border wall near the Morelos Dam in the Yuma, Arizona area.

Arizona Governor Doug Ducey ordered the installation of more than 100 The double-decker container placed in the summer, he said he can’t wait for U.S. Customs and Border Protection to award it the announced work contract.

Migrants continue to avoid recently erected barriers, bypassing them, including through the Cocopah Indian Reservation. The Cocopah Indian tribe complained that Arizona had placed 42 double stacks on its land against its will.

The border wall pushed by former President Donald Trump remains a powerful issue for Republican politicians looking to express support for border security.

Construction of the wall was halted on President Joe Biden’s first day in office, with billions of dollars of work unfinished but still under contract. The Biden administration has made some exceptions for small projects where people travel through areas deemed unsafe, including the gap near Yuma.

The Center for Biological Diversity took a different objection to the containers on Wednesday, filing a notice of intent to sue the Ducey government over what environmental groups say are plans to erect more containers at the border. The group said the move would hinder an important migration corridor for jaguars and ocelots.

Ducey’s office said it could not comment because it had not received an official notification from the center.

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