Trump's immigration crackdown starts to gain traction

13 Septembre, 2019, 14:28 | Auteur: Anatole Charbonneau
  • Supreme Court says Trump administration can deny asylum while legal fight continues

The United States Supreme Court ruled late Wednesday to lift court orders blocking a new rule on asylum seekers at the southern USA border.

The ruling means the administration can now refuse to consider a request for asylum from anyone failing to apply for it in another country, such as Mexico, after leaving home but before coming to the U.S. The order means migrants from Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador can't seek asylum in the U.S. if they didn't first ask for it in Mexico.

The decision, which stayed a lower court's temporary injunction, will be in effect while a broader case against the policy plays out in the courts. As The Times' Molly Hennessy-Fiske reported Wednesday, the Department of Homeland Security has barred access to the courts by the public, lawyers who do not have a case on the docket for that day, and the media, forcing reporters to watch testimony via teleconference from San Antonio - where most of the judges also work - rather than in the courtroom itself.

The court has not ruled on whether US President Donald Trump's reform is legal, rather green-lighting the administration's right to impose it temporarily.

When it was unveiled this year in July it was nearly immediately blocked from taking effect so the move is being seen as a victory for the Trump administration in United States media.

As for the possibility of being turned away by the United States, Takere said: "I can't think of that".

Supreme Court says Trump administration can deny asylum while legal fight continues

The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) has also slammed President Trump's proposed immigration policies and the Immigration and Customs Enforcement's crackdown on illegal immigrants.

Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador has been at pains to avoid angering Trump in the fraught discussions over trade and migration, mindful that Mexico sends around 80% of its exports to the United States.

The rule drew legal challenges including from a coalition of groups represented by the ACLU who accused the administration of pursuing an "asylum ban" and jeopardizing the safety of migrants fleeing persecution. But here the administration seeks to reduce public access to monitor how is handles asylum petitions from people who, for the most part, don't have a lawyer or a functional understanding of US immigration law.

USA law states explicitly that people can arrive anywhere along the border - not just at official ports of entry - and ask for asylum. However, under the new rule, candidates can not pass unless they have sought asylum in at least one country they traveled through, and were denied.

Two Justices, Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Sonia Sotomayor, dissented from the ruling. They would be placed in fast-track deportation proceedings and flown to their home countries at US expense.

Within hours of the ruling, senior administration figures said they would move instantly to implement the changes. "The lives of thousands of families are at stake", he added. Under the new policy, they would fail the test unless they sought asylum in at least one country they travelled through and were denied. "They shouldn't be paying the cartels thousands of dollars and risking their lives to take a 1,000-mile journey across several countries to get help".

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