Humanitarian Aid Camp Raided By US Border Patrol

Sonora Desert, Arizona – Volunteers at a humanitarian aid camp in the Sonora desert called “No More Deaths” reported that they have been surrounded by Border Patrol since 4:30 pm June 13th. The camp is currently under threat of a raid and Border Patrol continues surveillance on the camp.

According to No More Deaths:

Since 4:30 PM Tuesday, Nogales Station Border Patrol agents have surrounded and are actively surveilling the No More Deaths humanitarian aid camp. In an 102-degree heat wave, Border Patrol interference with humanitarian aid is unacceptable.

We demand that agents stand down from the No More Deaths camp and uphold their agreements to not surveil or interfere with humanitarian aid in the border region…

Surveillance and harassment of aid workers constitutes governmental interference with humanitarian relief, and is illegal under international human rights law as well as a violation of Border Patrol’s agreements with aid groups.

Phone calls to the Nogales, Border Patrol station had us routed to a public information officer. They did not answer their phone.

Border patrol agents and dog on private property of No More Deaths humanitarian aid station. Photo via No More Deaths/No Mas Muertes
Photo via No More Deaths/No Mas Muertes
Border patrol agents and dog on private property of No More Deaths humanitarian aid station.  Photo via No More Deaths/No Mas Muertes

Unicorn Riot spent late February following No More Deaths volunteers as they managed scattered water drops in the remote Sonora Desert. The camp provides humanitarian aid that has saved the lives of migrants who become lost in the desert. During that time we documented past experiences with border patrol raids, toured their camp and learned about their mission. Unicorn Riot created a short mini documentary about the experience:

Crisis: Borderlands from Unicorn Riot on Vimeo.

*UPDATE* 06/15/17 9:51pm central.

No More Deaths updated their Facebook and stated that at 6 PM thirty armed border agents raided the camp accompanied by fifteen trucks, 2 quads, and a helicopter. Border Patrol apprehended four people receiving emergency medical care at the humanitarian aid camp. The No More Deaths camp, which has been operating for over thirteen years. called Border Patrol’s aggression “unprecedented.”

The raid on the medical aid camp is unacceptable and a break in our good faith agreements w BP to respect the critical work of ….The choice to interdict people only after they entered the camp is evidence that this was a direct attack on humanitarian aid.  – No More Deaths/No Mas Muertes, June 16, 2017

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