Three Iraqi men claiming to be Christians were caught in Texas after entering the U.S. illegally.

FBI agents said the men, in their early 20s, said they are afraid of facing persecution if returned to Iraq, reported KRGV-TV in Brownsville, Texas.

Eleven Iraqis have been caught trying to enter the U.S. illegally since October.

The men, who are being held for questioning, were detained Saturday near the Los Indios International Bridge near Harlingen, Texas, the station said.

They previously were arrested in Mexico carrying Greek passports and were held for a month for entering Mexico illegally.

Mexican authorities reportedly released the men, however, and told them to “go north.”

In January, Mexican officials said they arrested four illegal-alien Iraqis trying to sneak across the border into the U.S..

Acting on an anonymous tip, police found the four aliens on a bus in Navajoa, about 375 miles south of the Arizona border, Mexico’s attorney general’s office said.

The Associated Press reported at the time that though many illegal-alien Iraqis have been captured in Mexican territory en route to the U.S. border, none had been found to have had any links to terrorism.

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