US Army installs miles of barbed wire on border with Mexico

 About 100 soldiers worked for three days on the banks of the Rio Grande in Laredo, Texas. Large groups of Central American caravans are in another part of the border, in Tijuana, where they were badly received by residents.
 They began to work in the cold of the morning and move quickly, unrolling reel behind barbed wire spool and later to fasten it to poles stuffed in the ground.
  The fence was installed in three days by approximately 100 soldiers of the 19th US Army Battalion of Engineers, located in Fort Knox, Kentucky.
 The troops are not in a war zone, but in Laredo, a city on the border with Mexico, dominated by a section of Rio Grande.
 President Donald Trump sent 5,800 troops to the border to prevent the arrival of large groups of Central American migrants traveling through Mexico, a measure critics denounced as an attempt to gain political advantage ahead of the midterm elections held earlier this year. month.
 Over the weekend, Lieutenant Alan Koepnick's platoon was able to extend the wire fence along the banks of a quiet river side park near downtown Laredo.
 While the families walked dogs, barbecued on the grill and relaxed, the soldiers mounted the wire, not without tearing the camouflage uniforms with metal feathers.
 Koepnick acknowledged that some residents of Laredo expressed concern about the fences and the presence of troops.
 "But there's also a lot of support, people coming in, veterans shaking hands, bringing us cakes, water ... things like that," Koepnick told AFP.
  About 100 meters behind him, one can see a group of people on the Mexican side of the river.
"You'll see people across the river cursing us in Spanish and throwing bottles at us, but this side is more positive," Koepnick said.
 The lieutenant and his men are unarmed, although a group of armed military police remain by their side as a "protective force."
 US law does not allow military personnel to perform police duties. Therefore, the soldiers will not have any direct interaction with the immigrants.
 Trump, who wants to build a wall along the 3,200-mile border with Mexico, praised military work last week: "They built large fences and built a very powerful barrier."
 Laura Pole, a British tourist who visits Laredo for the third time, was less enthusiastic. "It reminds me of Hitler and the concentration camps," she said.

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