Pentagon puts an end to Trump border wall projects using military funds

Photo: Reuters A section of the US-Mexico border wall at Sunland Park opposite the Mexican border city of Ciudad Juarez

The Pentagon is in the process of canceling the construction of all parts of former President Donald Trump’s border wall with Mexico that were being built using military funds, with the unused money being returned to military.

As Reuters reminds, Trump declared a national emergency in 2019 in an effort to redirect funding to build a wall along the US southern border. President Joe Biden, however, issued a proclamation on 20 January, his first day in office, ordering a freeze on border wall projects and directing a review of the legality of its funding and contracting methods.

"The Department of Defense is proceeding with canceling all border barrier construction projects paid for with funds originally intended for other military missions and functions such as schools for military children, overseas military construction projects in partner nations, and the National Guard and Reserve equipment account," Pentagon spokesman Jamal Brown said in a statement on Friday.

Brown also assured that the returned funds would be used for deferred military construction projects instead, although it was not immediately clear how much would be returned to the military, but it was likely to be several billion dollars.

The Department of Homeland Security also announced on Friday that it would take steps to address "physical dangers resulting from the previous administration’s approach to border wall construction."

It said it would repair the Rio Grande Valley’s flood barrier system, which it said the wall construction under the Trump administration had blown large holes into, as well as remediate soil erosion in San Diego along a wall segment.

Trump's diversion of funds from the Pentagon had been heavily criticised by lawmakers, who said it put national security at risk and circumvented congress. In 2019 alone, the military said more than 120 US military construction projects would be adversely affected by Trump's move.

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