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6 arrested after 4 swim around border wall: Border Patrol

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Six people were arrested in Imperial Beach, California on Sunday after four of them—all undocumented—were caught swimming around the southern border wall, according to KYMA Yuma and other outlets.

U.S. Border Patrol said agents were patrolling the foggy coastline Sunday morning, according to the local news station, when they spotted four men walking along the beach while donning ripped wetsuits without equipment.

When they approached the men, they took off. The agents apprehended a 17-year-old, but the remaining three hopped into a GMC Acadia SUV.

Agents pulled the SUV over as they tried to escape the area and found the trio in wetsuits, plus a driver and passenger.

All five adults and the 17-year-old were taken to the Border Patrol station for processing. The driver and the passenger are charged with human smuggling and the vehicle was seized by Border Patrol.

“As a constant reminder to the public, if you see something out of the ordinary near the coast, don’t hesitate to call authorities,” Chief Patrol Agent Aaron Heitke said, per a U.S. Customs and Border Patrol press release. “Attempting to swim around the border wall is very dangerous, especially in the thick fog that was present that morning, yet callous smugglers continue to guide people on this dangerous course.”

You can follow Douglas Braff on Twitter @DouglasPBraff.

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Middle East

Facebook, Instagram Employees ‘Censor or Delete’ Protests against Iran

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Iran President Rouhani

Former and current Facebook and Instagram employees are shedding light onto the “fact checkers” that are censoring vital content such as protests against Iran. “According to a report by BBC Persian, these employees admitted that at all levels of the company, the Iran regime’s influence has infiltrated, leaving biased and pro-regime content monitors to restrict, censor or delete posts about the current protests in Iran” reports The Foreign Desk.

Similar to censorship at the companies in the United States and elsewhere, the behavior is its own political movement. “The actions by these Iranian employees to remove images of the demonstrations in Iran and associated hashtags helps reinforce the Islamic Republic’s argument that the protests are not so widespread.”

According to one of the former employees who had his identity hidden for security purposes, told the BBC Persian in an interview from Germany, that the workers travel back and forth between Europe and Iran. “About 90 percent” of the decision making on censorship is done by these “fact checkers.”

“These are individuals who single-handedly take posts down. According to the source, employees are not allowed to have their personal cellular devices with them at their workstations, so these individuals go to the break room to report a post from their personal phones and then come back to their workstations and address the ‘complaint’ they just created.”

 

The Foreign Desk adds:

In 2019 TELUS International became the third-party company contracted with Instagram and Facebook to become their fact checkers and address complaints from users reporting posts for violent, hateful, or threatening material. 

A second source, a former TELUS employee, said approximately 400-500 Iranians work at the company in Germany, a country that is known to have diplomatic and bilateral relations with the Islamic Republic. 

The Islamic Republic has learned from the Green Revolution of 2009 to infiltrate Western social media outlets and their parent companies to control the narrative and prevent the international community from siding with anti-regime demonstrators.

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