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US House to vote on bill to end family separations

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  • Post category:Politics / USA
  • Post last modified:21/06/2018
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WASHINGTON: US lawmakers will vote Thursday on a bill that would end the practice of separating migrant children from parents caught entering the country without papers, House Speaker Paul Ryan said Wednesday.

“We do not want children taken away from their parents. We can enforce our immigration laws without breaking families apart. The administration says it wants Congress to act and we are,” he said.

Tomorrow the House will vote on legislation to keep families together,” said Ryan, the top Republican in the US Congress.

Relevant pieces published earlier:

i) Democratic lawmakers vowed Sunday to end the “evil” separation of migrant children from their parents at the US border, as First Lady Melania Trump made a rare political plea to end the deeply controversial practice.

The “zero-tolerance” border security policy implemented by President Donald Trump’s administration has sparked outrage on both sides of the political aisle and took on particular resonance as America celebrated Father’s Day. Trump has said he wants the separations to end but continues to blame opposition Democrats for the crisis, which critics say is one of his own makings. “The Democrats should get together with their Republican counterparts and work something out on Border Security & Safety.

Don’t wait until after the election because you are going to lose!” he tweeted. His wife, who seldom wades into the political arena, opted to call for bipartisan immigration reform to fix the issue, rather than denounce the policy. “Mrs Trump hates to see children separated from their families and hopes both sides of the aisle can finally come together to achieve successful immigration reform,” her spokeswoman Stephanie Grisham told CNN. “She believes we need to be a country that follows all laws, but also a country that governs with heart.” Laura Bush, the former first lady and wife of Republican ex-president George W. Bush, unflinchingly rejected the policy.

ii) President Donald Trump’s administration has erected a temporary encampment near the US-Mexico border in Texas to house the increasing number of migrant children in government custody, a government official confirmed Friday. Immigrant children travelling alone or separated from relatives can be held by authorities under US rules. The Trump administration has backed family separations, including in asylum cases, as part of efforts to deter illegal immigration. The new shelter consisting of large temporary tent structures opened Thursday with the capacity for 360 children near an official border crossing point about 35 miles (55 kilometres) southeast of the city of El Paso, according to Kenneth Wolfe of the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). “It is already open,” Wolfe told the Media, ” and is designated for “minors referred by DHS (Department of Homeland Security) to HHS for our unaccompanied alien children program.” He described the large tents housing the children as containing “a full heating, ventilation and air conditioning system, as well as a floor and doors.” HHS is tasked with caring for “unaccompanied alien children,” which by law is any minor that arrives at the border without parents or relatives, or for whom loved ones were not “available to provide care and physical custody.” The Trump administration is facing mounting outrage over its decision to systematically bring criminal charges against undocumented immigrants detained at the border, which forces them into federal prisons where children cannot stay. The previous policy usually allowed families to remain together and often released them into the country until their appointed immigration court dates. (Published on 16th June 2018) 

iii) Nearly 2,000 minors were separated from their parents or adult guardians who illegally crossed into the United States over a recent six-week period, officials said Friday in the most comprehensive 2018 figures provided on family separations. Between April 19 and May 31 of this year, the 1,995 children were separated from 1,940 adults who were being held by US border patrol in preparation for prosecution for crossing the border illegally, a Department of Homeland Security spokesman said on a call with reporters. The detention numbers appear to have spiked after President Donald Trump’s administration announced a “zero tolerance” policy on illegal border crossings, with a DHS official defending the policy by saying “we are not going to ignore the law any longer.” (Published on 16th June 2018) 



Sania Jamali

Sania Jamali, who studied Media in UAE, is associated with since its inception (2015) mostly reporting International Politics.