DHS Secretary Tours U.S-Mexico Border in San Ysidro

Department of Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly paid San Diego a visit on Friday, in his first tour since he’s taken office to address border security.

Kelly took a tour of security operations at the U.S.-Mexico border crossing in San Ysidro, the last stop on his week-long tour. He also spent some time speaking with several state and federal law enforcement agencies about improving border security.

San Diego Police Chief Shelley Zimmerman and San Diego County Sheriff Bill Gore were also present.

“What I saw today, the professionalism that I observed in a very potentially dangerous environment, gave me great pride,” Kelly said.

During the conference, he spoke of the individuals taken into custody by the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), saying that they were illegal immigrants. He added that border authorities are only “executing the law.”

“If there are laws on the books that are bad laws, then change them, but people like me, like CBP, local law enforcement, we have no alternative but to enforce the law. We can’t ignore the law,” Kelly said.

His visit came on the same day a drug tunnel was discovered near the border in a Tijuana parking lot.

“The face that they are tunneling under it, goes to the effectiveness of not just the wall, the physical barrier that already exists here in San Diego, but goes to the effectiveness of the men and women that back that wall, that patrol that wall,” he said.

He added: “I would argue that the fact that they’re spending huge amounts of money to tunnel underneath the wall tells you that they can’t get through it.”

Although Kelly has told lawmakers in the past he would like to see the construction of wall within the next two years, he did not address the issue on Friday.

On his tour, he previously visited Rio Grande, Texas and Nogales, Arizona.