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Photo: Paul Ratje/AFP via Getty Images

Members of the Biden administration are condemning footage that shows U.S. Border Patrol agents reportedly whipping at and charging horses at migrants in Del Rio, Texas, CNN reports.

Why it matters: Over the weekend, the Biden administration began cracking down on the thousands of Haitian migrants who have sought refuge in Del Rio in the hope of seeking asylum. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) launched an investigation into the Border Patrol incident after it drew backlash online.

What they're saying: "What I saw depicted about those individuals on horseback, treating human beings the way they were, is horrible. And I fully support what is happening right now, which is a thorough investigation into exactly what is going on there," Vice President Kamala Harris said on Tuesday.

  • "But human beings should never be treated that way and I am deeply troubled by it," she added.

"I was horrified by what I saw," DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas said in an interview with CNN's Brianna Keilar earlier Tuesday. "I'm going to let the investigation run its course. But the pictures that I observed troubled me profoundly. That defies all of the values that we seek to instill in our people."

  • "I, by no means, diminish the humane issue that it presents, but I want to be clear that we do have a plan to address it, respecting the needs of the individuals and we are executing on that plan."

Worth noting: AFP photographer Paul Ratje took the photos and later told KTSM he didn’t witness agents using reins as whips. Another reporter on the scene, Martha Pskowski of the El Paso Times, said that reins were swung like a whip by at least one agent.

The big picture: U.S. authorities began deporting hundreds of migrants back to Haiti on Sunday. Roughly 4,000 have been moved "from under that bridge already," according to Mayorkas.

  • The administration plans to move more migrants to other processing centers "so that we can ensure their security and safety and the security and safety of the community."
  • "We expect to see dramatic change in the next 48 to 96 hours," Mayorkas added.

Editor’s note: This article has been updated to include comments from multiple media outlets who were at the scene on what they witnessed happen.

Go deeper

Updated Oct 13, 2021 - Politics & Policy

Biden lifting land border travel restrictions for fully vaccinated

Photo: Yuri Gripas/Bloomberg via Getty Images

The Biden administration will open up U.S. land borders with Canada and Mexico to non-essential travel starting in November — but only to those fully vaccinated against COVID-19.

Why it matters: Government officials and business leaders have decried the economic impact pandemic travel restrictions have had on border communities. They have called for the U.S. to reopen the borders given high, and rising, vaccinations rates there.

Scoop: Garland defends DOJ's handling of Jan. 6 probe

Attorney General Merrick Garland. Photo: Kevin Dietsch/Getty Images

Attorney General Merrick Garland will tell the House Judiciary Committee on Thursday that federal prosecutors "are doing exactly what they are expected to do" in seeking accountability for the "intolerable assault" on the Capitol on Jan. 6, Axios has learned.

Why it matters: Allies of former President Trump, including Republican congressmen, have criticized the department's treatment rioters charged with crimes, and sought to recast the insurrection as a righteous protest. Garland's testimony with be his first appearance before the panel.

Updated 35 mins ago - World

Police charge man with murder of British MP David Amess

Police outside Belfairs Methodist Church in Leigh-on-Sea, England, on Oct. 15. Photo: John Keeble/Getty Images

Police said Thursday that Ali Harbi Ali, a 25-year-old British man, has been charged with the murder of David Amess, a Conservative Party lawmaker in the U.K.

The big picture: Last week, the Metropolitan Police declared the fatal stabbing a terrorist incident, saying that they had found "a potential motivation linked to Islamist extremism."

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