The U.S. Department of Homeland Security sent a cease and desist letter to Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton regarding the state’s decision to seize Shelby Park in Eagle Pass.

Department of Homeland Security General Counsel Jonathan Meyer wrote in the letter that the state’s decision to seize the park is unconstitutional since it has “impeded operations” of Border Patrol, reported CNN.

“Texas has demonstrated that even in the most exigent circumstances, it will not allow Border Patrol access to the border to conduct law enforcement and emergency response activities,” the letter continued.

These comments revolve around claims made by Rep. Henry Cuellar (D-TX) that state law enforcement officers prevented Border Patrol from saving three unlawful migrants from drowning.

However, the Texas Military Department (TMD) released a statement denying these allegations, writing that “[a]t no time did TMD security personnel along the river observe any distressed migrants, nor did TMD turn back any illegal immigrants from the U.S. during this period,” according to Fox News correspondent Bill Melugin.

The cease and desist letter further states that DHS will pursue legal action against the state if it does not “cease and desist its efforts to block Border Patrol’s access in and around the Shelby Park area and remove all barriers to access in the Shelby Park area.”

“If you have not confirmed by the end of day on January 17, 2024, that Texas will cease and desist its efforts to block Border Patrol’s access in and around the Shelby Park area and remove all barriers to access to the U.S.-Mexico border, we will refer the matter to the Department of Justice for appropriate action and consider all other options available to restore Border Patrol’s access to the border,” wrote Meyer in the letter, per CNN.

The cease and desist comes just days after the Texas National Guard seized control over Shelby Park due to the state’s claims that the federal government decided to “perpetuate illegal crossings,” as previously reported by The Dallas Express.

A video posted by Chuck Callesto on Friday appears to show multiple Border Patrol vehicles attempting to get into the park, only to be turned away at the entrance by soldiers from the Texas National Guard.

This seizure has been criticized by many, including Eagle Pass Mayor Rolando Salinas.

Salinas stated during a press conference that he was “surprised as to this decision” and that the state “just took it upon themselves,” adding that he and many city officials are “not in agreement” with the actions taken.

DHS has also been critical of the decision since it was first made, claiming it is a “blatant disregard for federal authority over immigration.”

“The State of Texas should stop interfering with the U.S. Border Patrol’s enforcement of U.S. law,” added the department, per CBS News.