US Defense Secretary James Mattis has directed the roughly 6,000 American troops deployed to stop arriving migrants at the southern border with Mexico to remain there through Christmas.
The Pentagon chief made the announcement on Tuesday after a request by the Department of Homeland Security for the extension.
Mattis’s previous order for the border deployment was set to expire on December 15.
“The Secretary of Defense has approved an extension of the ongoing Department of Defense (DoD) support to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) response to migrant caravan arrivals. DoD support to DHS is authorized until Jan. 31, 2019,” said Army Col. Jamie Davis, a Pentagon spokesman.
Military forces are expected to be positioned across California, Arizona and Texas, installing and repairing wire barriers and providing assistance to Border Patrol agents.
President Donald Trump first ordered the troops to the border to stop members of a…