U.S. Opens 1st Northern Border Air Patrol Station
The U.S. government is stepping up efforts to patrol its porous northern border with Canada by using helicopters, airplanes and boats to monitor illegal immigration and drug traffic, officials said on Friday. The first of five planned facilities, the Air and Marine Branch, has begun operations 80 miles north of Seattle, with the aim of “maximizing” security with Canada, a country known for its friendly ties with the United States. Similar patrols already operate extensively along the southern border with Mexico, where thousands of illegal immigrants from Mexico and Central America pass through into the United States each day. “The initiative at the Northern border is aimed at shutting down narcotics and human smuggling routes and networks that operate along the U.S.-Canada border,” the Department of Homeland Security and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement service said in a statement.