An illegal battle against asylum in the United States
The Trump Administration has decided to bypass Congress and deny the right to asylum to immigrants from Central America.
The Donald Trump government has finally decided to close the doors to those fleeing violence in the world.
After imposing a migratory ban on Muslim countries, separating families at the border and subjecting detained immigrants to the worst of circumstances, the Administration has now imposed a measure to block the right to asylum.
The Department of Justice explained in a statement that they have decided to impose a new obstacle to the "eligibility" of asylum seekers on the southern border with Mexico.
Anyone who has not requested protection in the first available country that has crossed before arriving in the United States will not be considered as a beneficiary of international law in the country's immigration ports.
"Until Congress can act, this interim rule will help reduce a major 'pull' factor driving irregular migration to the United States and enable DHS and DOJ to more quickly and efficiently process cases originating from the southern border, leading to fewer individuals transiting through Mexico on a dangerous journey," explained Acting Secretary of Homeland Security, Kevin McAleenan.
This strategy would then affect a large percentage of immigrants crowded on the other side of the border and waiting their turn to seek asylum at U.S. ports of entry.
Hondurans, Salvadorans, Guatemalans, and all immigrants who must cross another country before arriving in the United States are excluded from the right to request the protection contemplated by the United Nations for decades.
During the 2019 fiscal year alone, U.S. Border Patrol has detained 363,000 members of immigrant families from Honduras, El Salvador, and Guatemala, compared to 3,200 Mexicans, the New York Times explained.
As stipulated in international law, this measure can only be described as "illegal."
According to the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR), the decision of the U.S. government not only endangers thousands of immigrant families but "is not in line with international obligations."
In a statement published after the DOJ announcement, the Agency expressed its concern over the government's unilateral decision and offered to mediate in the diatribe, especially when it comes to addressing the critical situation of the communities in their countries of origin.
However, this is a move that has long been coming.
On June 2018, then-Attorney General Jeff Sessions issued a sentence annulling the judicial precedent that allowed female victims of domestic violence to apply for asylum in the United States.
Sessions argued at the time that it was "a correct interpretation of the law," as his successor William P. Barr is doing now.
Although pro-immigrant organizations have announced immediate legal steps in the courts against the new government strategy, the fate of thousands of people trapped - both on the way to the United States and in the detention centers within the country- is uncertain.