Arizona files lawsuit to protect temporary border barrier from federal action

YUMA, AZ — The state of Arizona has filed a lawsuit to protect the temporary barrier that was put in place to fill 3,820 feet of gaps at the Mexico border.

A lawsuit was filed Friday saying Governor Doug Ducey is seeking an “injunction barring any federal governmental actors, including the Forest Service and BOR, from attempting to exercise jurisdiction over the Roosevelt Reservation in the State.”

The suit is asking that the “State has concurrent jurisdiction with the appropriate federal governmental entity over those parts of the Roosevelt Reservation located in the State.”

Earlier this week, the federal government demanded the state remove the double-stacked shipping containers along the U.S.-Mexico border.

“The unauthorized placement of those containers constitutes a violation of federal law and is a trespass against the United States,” the Bureau of Reclamation letter stated earlier this week. “That trespass is harming federal lands and resources and impeding Reclamation’s ability to perform its mission.”

As a result, Arizona has filed a lawsuit to protect its temporary barrier that was put in place to fill 3,820 feet of border gaps.

“Our border communities are overwhelmed by illegal activity as a result of the Biden administration’s failure to secure the southern border,” said Governor Ducey in a release Friday. “Arizona is taking action to protest on behalf of our citizens. With this lawsuit, we’re pushing back against efforts by federal bureaucrats to reverse the progress we’ve made. The safety and security of Arizona and its citizens must not be ignored. Arizona is going to do the job that Joe Biden refuses to do — secure the border in any way we can. We’re not backing down.”

However, the Cocopah Indian Tribe has also said that the state of Arizona acted against its wishes by stacking the shipping containers on its land.

Across the southern border in the last fiscal year – United States Customs and Border Protection encountered over 2 million migrants — a new record. For comparison, in 2019, there were 860,000 encounters.

In a release Friday, Ducey criticized the federal government for taking two months to respond to Arizona’s temporary border barrier.

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The move comes after the federal government took two months to respond to the Border Barrier Mission – which only took 11 days to fill 3,820 feet of gaps in the border wall,” stated a release from Governor Ducey’s office. “The federal government sought the removal of the 130 containers that protect Arizonans from dangerous activity at the border, indicating it would replace the double-stacked, 9,000-pound containers with “temporary” barriers.”

Ducey also stated that it would repetitive to replace the temporary barrier with other temporary barriers.

The full lawsuit can be read below:



ABC15 Arizona

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