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United States moves to ban refugees who enter illegally

United States moves to ban refugees who enter illegally

The administration issued a new policy Thursday that would give President Trump power to block asylum claims from the migrant caravan and other illegal immigrants who jump the U.S. -Mexico border.

A group of Central American migrants, representing the thousands participating in a caravan trying to reach the US border, undertake an hours-long march to the office of the United Nations' humans rights body in Mexico City, Thursday, Nov. 8, 2018.

The rule will be paired with a presidential proclamation - expected to come Friday before President Trump leaves for France - with more details of which migrants would be impacted.

The changes are meant to funnel asylum seekers through official border crossings for speedy rulings, officials said, instead of having them try to circumvent such crossings on the almost 2,000-mile (3,200-kilometer) border.

The American Civil Liberties Union, which defends constitutional rights, said that the right to request asylum must be granted to anyone entering the country. Immigration advocacy groups insist US laws clearly extend asylum protections to anyone who reaches the United States, no matter how they enter the country.

Days after taking office in January 2017, the president cited those same executive powers under the Immigration and Nationality Act to issue an executive order banning travelers from several majority-Muslim countries from entering the US, setting off global protests as well as a number of lawsuits filed by the ACLU and other immigrant rights groups.

"Channelling those aliens to ports of entry would encourage these aliens to first avail themselves of offers of asylum from Mexico".

Administration officials said those denied asylum under the proclamation may be eligible for similar forms of protection if they fear returning to their countries, though they would be subject to a tougher threshold.

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United States officials indicated Saturday that they had no plans to expand staffing of asylum claim facilities at the ports.

"The proposal is patently unlawful and there will be a court challenge", said Lee Gelernt, deputy director of the ACLU's Immigrants' Rights Project.

The 9th Circuit concluded that the Department of Homeland Security was wrong to assert that DACA is illegal, writing that the program is "a permissible exercise of executive discretion", and therefore those who have sought to challenge the administration's move to rescind it "are likely to succeed".

The push comes after President Donald Trump railed during the final weeks of the campaign about "caravan after caravan" making its way to the border through Mexico.

Earlier efforts by the Trump administration to limit migration prompted a political and legal backlash.

Over 5,200 U.S. troops have been sent to the border to erect razor-wire fences and provide surveillance and logistical support to the National Guardsmen and Customs and Border Patrol agents already there.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials defend the practice on the grounds that the border crossings are not equipped to process hundreds of asylum seekers daily, and officers must continue to facilitate ordinary cross-border travel and trade while protecting the country from terrorists and drug runners.

In 2017, the USA fielded more than 330,000 asylum claims, almost double the number two years earlier and surpassing Germany as highest in the world.