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ICE released hundreds of migrants in Texas before Christmas — and is planning to release hundreds more

Democrats are angry at ICE over it

PAUL RATJE/AFP/Getty Images

The Department of Immigration and Customs Enforcement released hundreds of migrants seeking asylum into El Paso, Texas, just before Christmas — and they're scheduled to several many more on Wednesday.

Local aid groups complained that ICE provided no prior warning before dropping off the more than 200 migrants at the bus depot in El Paso without money, food or means of communication. They were released late Sunday evening.

CNN's Nick Valencia reported that ICE plans to release more than 500 more migrants seeking asylum in the same city on Wednesday, but with more cooperation with local aid organizations. They will also be released in Las Cruces, New Mexico.

Valencia reported that he spoke to a migrant who had been released by ICE, but he told him that he was not seeking asylum, and would instead head to Missouri.

Rep. Beto O'Rourke (D-Texas), who lost his bid to unseat Senator Ted Cruz (R-Texas) in the midterm election, criticized ICE for the action and helped publicize the plight of the migrants.

"We're trying to ensure that ICE gives the community notice next time when they know there's not going to be space in existing migrant shelters," O'Rourke said in a Twitter video, "to give the community 24 hours heads up so that we can find hotel rooms, beds, alternative shelters, volunteers."

Here's the CBS News video report about the first release:

One last thing…
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