The number of people apprehended or turned away at the U.S.-Mexico border fell for the third consecutive month in August as the Trump administration pushes to curb crossings, though numbers remain higher than in recent years.
U.S. officials apprehended or denied entrance to roughly 64,000 migrants in August, down from about 82,000 in July, according to Mark Morgan, the acting commissioner of U.S. Customs and Border Protection, who addressed reporters at the White House on Monday.
The decline comes as Mexico steps up efforts to halt migrant flows as part of a June deal with President Donald Trump, who had threatened to impose tariffs on all Mexican goods unless the country helped stem migration. Part of the accord included Mexico dispatching national guard soldiers to its southern border to help intercept the migrants.
After reaching the deal, Trump said his potential new tariffs were “indefinitely suspended,” and he’s regularly praised Mexico’s efforts since. As recently as last week, the president said: “They’ve done a fantastic job, so we appreciate that very much.”
Migration over the southern U.S. border tends to drop in August due to high summer temperatures. A senior U.S. Customs and Border Protection official said in July that it wasn’t yet clear what share of the drop from May’s high can be attributed to Mexico’s actions, and how much is seasonal. Morgan said seasonal factors didn’t account for the drop.
More must-read stories from Fortune:
—Will gaffes hurt Biden’s chances of a 2020 win? Strategists are divided
—These are the 2020 senate races to watch
—Facebook and Google met with U.S. intelligence about 2020 election
—MSNBC climate change forum will give a voice to those denied the DNC debate stage
—Is Biden preparing to lose in Iowa? His campaign says the caucus isn’t a must-win
Get up to speed on your morning commute with Fortune’s CEO Daily newsletter.