The group claims they are not the militia and that they have enough volunteers to shut down 25 international bridges.
A statement released to the media by a group called “American patriots” revealed intentions to halt commerce and tourism this Saturday by blocking the main southern ports of entry of the county.
“It is a peaceful protest, it has nothing to do with the militia, we’re going to pull up 200 feet away from the ports of entry, and they are going to get out of their cars and close the ports down. No traffic will be coming in or out,” explains Barbie Rogers, activist.
These activists are putting out a call to volunteer and help accomplish their mission, which forces the United States and Mexican governments to comply with their wishes, some of which are to seal the border, revamp immigration laws, focus foreign aid towards strengthening the Mexico’s middle class and demand the release of sergeant Andrew Tahmooressi, who is imprisoned in Mexico for entering the country with firearms.
“As the incident evolves then we will be able to take action and address each and every single incident that is happening out there, behavior or conduct that is out there whether there is any behavior or conducts that needs our action to go into play,” explains Ruben Villescas, Pharr police chief.
In Hidalgo County, it’s the Pharr chief of police who has worked a contingency plan with law enforcement at every level of government in case the protest gets out of hand, assuring the public that it will be “business as usual”.
“The only way this would escalate is if the government itself escalates it. No one on the protest side is going to escalate this. They will be escorted out if they do,” adds Rogers.
If effective, the activist estimates that about 1.4 billion dollars in U.S./Mexico commerce will be stopped every day of the protest.
In the valley, activists plan to gather at 8 am Saturday at the Brownsville, Pharr and Rio Grande city ports of entry until their demands are met.