Saturday Jan 12, 2019
TEXAS: During a border patrol meeting with officials, US President Donald Trump appeared to imply that Pakistan is located in the Middle East.
Trump flew to the Texas border with Mexico to try to bolster his case for the border wall as a partial US government shutdown tied to the issue stretched into its 22nd day with no sign of new talks to resolve the impasse.
During the meeting, a border official from South Texas told Trump that officials had apprehended two Pakistanis at the border on Wednesday.
“Yesterday we had 450 apprehensions, Mr President. Out of that, 133 from countries other than the Central American countries and Mexico. India, we apprehended some Pakistanis, some from Romania, on and on and on,” the border official told Trump.
“How many Pakistanis?” Trump asked. “Two yesterday,” the border official replied. “So far this sector has apprehended folks from 41 different countries. Just yesterday we apprehended 133 people from countries other than Central America and Mexico. That includes individuals from India, China, Pakistan, Romania, Ecuador, Nicaragua, on and on and on,” the border guard reiterated, this time addressing the cameras.
The border guard did not appear to be aware that Nicaragua is a country in Central America.
“So they apprehended people from the Middle East and they do it all the time,” Trump said, apparently unaware that none of the countries listed by the border guard are in the Middle East.
The Republican president is adamant that a government funding bill to end the shutdown include $5.7 billion for a border barrier — his signature campaign promise. Congressional Democrats oppose that.
The standoff has left a quarter of the federal government closed down and hundreds of thousands of federal employees without pay.