Washington — President Donald Trump urged Congress in a televised speech on Tuesday to give him $5.7bn in 2019 to help build a wall on the US border with Mexico but stopped short of declaring a national emergency to pay for the barrier with military funds. Facing Democratic opposition in Congress to a wall that he promised to build as a presidential candidate, Trump said in his first prime-time address from the Oval Office that there was a growing security and humanitarian crisis at the US-Mexico border.

Using blunt language in an attempt to win public support, the Republican president said illegal immigrants and drugs flowing across the southern border posed a serious threat to American safety. “How much more American blood must be shed before Congress does its job?” he said, recounting gruesome details of murders he said were committed by illegal immigrants. But after days of hinting he might use presidential powers to declare an emergency as a first step toward directing mo...

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