The Pentagon soon will begin withdrawing some active duty service members at the U.S.-Mexico border, with 400 to 500 to be home before Christmas.
“Some units have completed their mission and they have already started to partially redeploy. Other units have been identified to rotate home and will be returning home over the next several weeks,” Army Col. Rob Manning told reporters at the Pentagon.
Manning said that 5,200 service members currently remain at the southern border, down from its peak of about 5,900 service members.
It is expected that on Dec. 15, the mission was originally set to end. Manning would only offer that “the numbers of troops that we have will be commensurate with the support” that Homeland Security and Customs and Border Protection (CBP) request from the Pentagon.
The Associated Press on Monday reported that about 2,200 of the active duty service members will be pulled from the border before the holidays, leaving 3,000 service members to assist border patrol agents.