Republican presidential hopefuls are using the Israeli-Palestinian conflict to urge tougher security at the U.S.-Mexico border, in what political operatives call a novel attempt to link a foreign conflict to the domestic debate over immigration.

The reason for that link is twofold, say the operatives and political strategists involved in the 2024 primary campaign.

Illegal immigration ranks near the top of Republican voters' concerns, meaning candidates are intent on bringing up the topic on the campaign trail as much as possible, they said.