Tags: Homeland Security | Immigration | Joe Biden | Trump Administration | asylum | restrictions | dhs

Trump Admin Pushes for Asylum Restrictions Ahead of Biden Inauguration

a migrant caravan marches toward the american border with mexico
(Moises Castillo/AP)

By    |   Monday, 11 January 2021 05:36 PM

The Trump administration is rushing to enact restrictions that would make things more difficult for asylum seekers, though a U.S. judge Friday blocked some of those measures, saying resigning Homeland Security secretary Chad Wolf lacked authority to impose the sweeping rules, reports CBS News.

If implemented, the rules would take effect before Joe Biden takes office.

Asylum is a legal protection designed for people fleeing persecution based on their race, religion, nationality, political beliefs, or membership to a social group. Any foreigner who steps on U.S. soil has a legal right to apply for asylum, according to U.S. asylum law and international treaty obligations.

The rules would narrow the types of persecution and severity of threats for which asylum is granted. Applicants seeking protections on the basis of gender or those who claim they were targeted by gangs, "rogue" government officials, or "non-state organizations" would likely not be eligible for asylum.

Immigration judges would be directed to be more selective about granting asylum claims and allow them to deny most applications without a court hearing.

They also would have weighed several new factors against an applicant's ability to win protections, among them failure to pay taxes. Criminal records would still count against an asylum-seeker even if their convictions were expunged.

"These rules, if they are actually implemented, will have a devastating effect on asylum-seekers and lead the United States to turn away to people seeking refuge back to the very countries that they have fled," Eleanor Acer, the director of the refugee protection program for the group Human Rights First, told CBS News.

Biden has pledged to undo many of Trump's immigration policies.

The U.S. government has largely suspended asylum at the U.S.-Mexico border during the coronavirus pandemic, citing public health concerns.

Information from the Associated Press was used in this report.

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The Trump administration is rushing to enact restrictions that would make things more difficult for asylum seekers, saying resigning Homeland Security secretary Chad Wolf lacked authority to impose the sweeping rules, reports CBS News.
asylum, restrictions, dhs, chad wolf, migrants
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2021-36-11
Monday, 11 January 2021 05:36 PM
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