The United States will soon begin returning individuals who unlawfully cross the U.S. southern border back to Mexico to wait there while their immigration cases proceed, the homeland security secretary, Kirstjen Nielsen, said on Thursday.
The ministry added that the actions taken by the Mexican and U.S. governments do not constitute a "safe third country" scheme, where migrants would have to request USA asylum while in Mexico. Under the new plan, asylum seekers will be sent back to Mexico until they are scheduled to appear in front of an immigration judge, a process that can take up to four years, according to the American Immigration Council, a legal group.
In response to the plan, Mexico's foreign ministry underscored that it still has the right to admit or reject the entry of foreigners into its territory. The policy change applies only to migrants coming from countries other than Mexico, officials said. "We know that access to counsel is one of the most important factors in whether or not an asylum seeker is able to live in safety in the United States". If you claim that forcing the migrants to wait in Mexico is somehow a violation of their rights you're basically saying that you think Mexico is an unfit, unsafe final destination.
Trump also attempted an earlier crackdown on illegal immigration that resulted in children being separated from the adults who illegally brought them into the country.
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Nielsen said in a statement the policy would be done legally.
In a statement to reporters, Amnesty International executive director Margaret Huang said Mexico is not a safe country for all people seeking protection.
Mexico's new president, Andrés Manuel Lopéz Obrador, took office on 1 December. Ove the past five years, there's been a 2,000 percent increase in aliens claiming credible fear, or applying for asylum.
They could, though, through an administrative change, be authorized to approve affirmative asylum claims if they believe those cases are strong enough and they have enough evidence.
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He said many "Caravaners" do not want to stay in Tijuana, especially after a recent uptick in violence. "If Mexico could protect them, they would be protecting their own citizens, and they can't".
Immigrant advocates and civil rights attorneys say that remaining in Mexico could be deadly to vulnerable families. Asylum seekers face a real risk of refoulement - or forced return to places where they may be persecuted - by Mexican immigration officials.
The biggest caravan consisted of thousands of migrants who traveled to the southern border from Honduras. At the port of entry in Tijuana, among other locations, migrants and refugees are managing an informal list of those wishing to cross into the United States to apply.
That during Christmas, a time in which we celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ, a Jesus Christ who had to flee for his life with Mary and Joseph, thank God there wasn't a wall that stopped him from seeking refuge in Egypt. Thank God that wall wasn't there.
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