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Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas during a House hearing in May 2021. Photo: Stefani Reynolds/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas issued a memo Tuesday officially terminating the Trump administration's "Remain in Mexico" program.

Why it matters: The program, known formally as Migrant Protection Protocols (MPP), forced tens of thousands of asylum seekers to await their immigration court proceedings in often dangerous and squalid conditions in Mexico.

  • DHS said approximately 68,000 people were returned to Mexico following their enrollment in MPP.

Context: President Biden issued an executive order in February to pause the program, and began allowing asylum seekers to enter the U.S. in phases.

  • Biden ordered DHS to "promptly review and determine whether to terminate or modify the program."
  • DHS said that between between Feb. 19 and May 25, approximately 11,200 people were allowed into the U.S. to wait for their hearings as part of the first phase of the rollback of MPP.
  • DHS said it is still processing asylum seekers in phases.

What they're saying: "I have determined that MPP does not adequately or sustainably enhance border management in such a way as to justify the program’s extensive operational burdens and other shortfalls," Mayorkas wrote in the memo to the leaders of the Customs and Border Protection, the Immigration and Customs Enforcement Agency and Citizenship and Immigration Services.

  • "Moreover, in making my assessment, I share the belief that we can only manage migration in an effective, responsible, and durable manner if we approach the issue comprehensively, looking well beyond our own border," the secretary added.
  • "As immigration courts designated to hear MPP cases were closed for public health reasons between March 2020 and April 2021, DHS spent millions of dollars each month to maintain facilities incapable of serving their intended purpose."
  • "Throughout this time, of course, tens of thousands of MPP enrollees were living with uncertainty in Mexico as court hearings were postponed indefinitely. As a result, any benefits the program may have offered are now far outweighed by the challenges, risks, and costs that it presents."

Go deeper: Biden administration to expedite immigration cases of undocumented families

Go deeper

DOJ declines to defend Mo Brooks in Capitol riot lawsuit

Rep. Mo Brooks during a June news conference on Capitol Hill. Photo: Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images)

The Department of Justice declined late Tuesday to represent Rep. Mo Brooks in a civil lawsuit against the Georgia congressman concerning the Capitol riot.

Why it matters: Brooks had argued he should have immunity in the suit, filed by Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-Calif.) against him, former President Trump, Donald Trump Jr. and Rudy Giuliani. Brooks said he was acting as a government employee when he spoke at a rally before the insurrection.

Updated 2 hours ago - Sports

Katie Ledecky wins gold in first women's 1500m freestyle

Team USA's Katie Ledecky celebrates after winning the final of the women's 1,500m freestyle swimming event during the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at the Tokyo Aquatics Centre in Tokyo on Wednesday. Photo: Attila Kisbenedek/AFP via Getty Images)

Katie Ledecky took home the Olympic gold medal in the women's 1,500-meter freestyle swimming race Tuesday evening, becoming the first female swimmer to win the newly added division. Team USA's Erica Sullivan won silver.

Of note: The Tokyo Games mark the first time that the long-distance race has been open to women, and Ledecky paid tribute to her predecessors after the race. "I just think of all the great U.S. swimmers who didn’t have a chance to swim that event," she said on NBC.

Updated 2 hours ago - Sports

Olympics dashboard

Katie Ledecky celebrates with teammate Erica Sullivan after winning the women’s 1500m freestyle final. Photo: Tom Pennington/Getty Images

🚨: Katie Ledecky wins gold in first women's 1500m freestyle

🤸🏾‍♀️: Simone Biles pulls out of gymnastics team finals, citing her mental health

🎾: "This one sucks more than the others," Naomi Osaka says on upset loss

⚽️: USA women's soccer ties Australia, propelling them to the quarterfinals

🏊‍♀️: Teen swimmer Lydia Jacoby wins first U.S. women's Tokyo Games gold

👟: World Athletics president supports reviewing marijuana rules in doping

🏄‍♀️: American Carissa Moore wins first-ever women's Olympic gold in surfing

Go deeper: Full Axios coverage - Medal tracker