In December, CBP released its apprehension statistics for 2014, which show that of the 486,651 apprehensions, 257,473 were from countries “other than Mexico.” Of those apprehended from countries “other than Mexico,” CBP provided CNSNews.com the countries of origin of those taken into custody.
Of those from countries “other than Mexico,” 1,191 were from 12 countries – Iran, Sudan, Cuba and Syria (state sponsors of terror), and Afghanistan, Algeria, Lebanon, Libya, Nigeria, Iraq, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Somalia and Yemen (“countries of interest") – designated by the federal government to have terrorist links.
The breakdown of the apprehension of individuals from 12 countries designated as “countries of interest” is as follows, according to CBP: Afghanistan (4); Algeria (3); Cuba (1,061); Iran (4); Iraq (7); Lebanon (10); Nigeria (29); Pakistan (31); Saudi Arabia (16); Somalia (6); Syria (14); and Yemen (6).
As CNSNews.com reported in 2010, following the failed attempt to bring down Northwest Flight 253 on Dec. 25, the Transportation Safety Administration (TSA) announced enhanced airport screening for people traveling through or from 14 “countries of interest.” TSA did not specify which nations it considered “countries of interest.”
“TSA is mandating that every individual flying into the U.S. from anywhere in the world who holds a passport issued by or is traveling from or through nations that are state sponsors of terrorism or other countries of interest will be required to go through enhanced screening,” the TSA said.
“TSA directed the increased use of enhanced screening technologies and mandates threat-based and random screening for majority passengers on U.S. bound international flights,” it added.
But a Jan. 4, 2010 New York Times report, citing Obama administration officials, identified them as Afghanistan, Algeria, Lebanon, Libya, Nigeria, Iraq, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Somalia and Yemen. The other four – Iran, Sudan, Syria and Cuba – were identified as state sponsors of terrorism by the State Department.
A Jan. 4, 2010 report in USA Today, citing the TSA as the source, described the full list of nations whose citizens would be targeted for enhanced security checks as “14 countries with terrorism problems.”