California Keeps 100 National Guard Troops at Mexico Border

SACRAMENTO (AP) — California is keeping a small contingent of National Guard troops at the state’s southern border for another six months.

Gov. Gavin Newsom said Tuesday that he’s giving them the additional mission of helping to stop the smuggling of illegal pesticides, including carbofuran. The deadly chemical is increasingly found at illegal cannabis cultivation sites.

He’s allowing up to 100 troops to remain through March to help the U.S. Customs and Border Protection Counter Terrorism Operations Center. But he says they still won’t aid the federal government’s immigration operations.

Instead, the troops will continue focusing on deterring the smuggling of illegal drugs and disrupting other forms of organized crime.

Newsom announced in February that he would withdraw most of the troops from the border, devoting some to help with wildfire prevention efforts instead.

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