Trump Announces Planned Crackdown on Asylum Seekers

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Trump and allies have spoken frequently about so-called "loopholes" in immigration law that allow migrants to apply for asylum while on American soil, and the President has recently encouraged prospective asylum seekers to apply for entry from their home countries. They do that with us, they're going to be arrested for a long time. "What they did with rocks being thrown at their faces, not going to happen to our soldiers". But official statements suggest at least some of them will be armed.

"We've decided if we're going to die, we are going to die together".

Migrants expressed surprise and disappointment at the decision.

"They're playing with our dignity".

For weeks now a group of Central and South American migrants have been walking towards the United States in growing numbers with the hopes that they will be allowed to exercise their legal right to seek asylum in the US.

"In general, mass migrations are risky for the migrants themselves", Nielsen said.

"It's a letdown that first they told us yes, and then they said no. People are mad and confused", she said.

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In April, Trump ordered up to 4,000 National Guardsmen to head to the border as a different migrant caravan wound its way north. The U.S. military will send approximately 5,000 support troops to the U.S. -Mexico border, the Pentagon announced on Monday.

An initial caravan departed from Honduras last month and is now making its way through the southern Mexican state of Oaxaca.

Central American migrants, part of the caravan hoping to reach the USA border, wait for a ride in Donaji, Oaxaca state, Mexico, Friday, Nov. 2, 2018.

The Salvadorans expressed misgivings that they would be deported, so they turned around and waded across a shallow stretch of the river to enter Mexico.

Several thousand migrants opted to rest in the towns of Juan Rodriguez Clara, Veracruz and Isla, Veracruz, which are about 64 kilometres from their previous rest stop in Sayula. The first, largest group of mainly Honduran migrants entered Mexico on October 19. While the precise size of the second caravan is unclear, that could be equivalent to about 10 per cent of those participating. If the military's assessment is accurate, it would mean the United States is positioning five soldiers on the border for every one caravan member expected to arrive there.

In August 2017, the Trump administration announced it shut down the Central American Minors (Cam) program, which allowed people lawfully in the U.S. to apply for refugee resettlement or temporary immigration status for their children or other eligible family members.

Similarly, Mexican authorities also said that migrants attacked its agents with rocks, glass bottles and fireworks when they broke through a gate on the Mexican border, but were pushed back.

There has also been pressure on the first caravan. There has also been pressure on the main caravan, with federal police pulling over freight trucks that pick up migrants and forcing them off, saying that clinging to the tops or sides of the trucks was risky.

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At other points along the route, police have forced overloaded pickups to drop off migrants.

Twelve Honduran nationals are named as plaintiffs in the suit, which was filed in U.S. District Court in Washington, D.C.

But many appear to be growing increasingly angry with caravan organizers after confusion broke out regarding buses that would have taken migrants to Mexico City more quickly.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection "is violating the law and turning away asylum seekers on Texas bridges", said Shaw Drake, an El Paso-based attorney with the Texas ACLU's Border Rights Center.

Asked if he envisions U.S. troops firing on anyone in the groups of migrants, Trump told reporters from the White House's Roosevelt Room: "I hope not".

Trump said his administration is finalizing an executive action that would limit asylum claims to legal ports of entry, claiming migrants frequently abuse the system by fabricating their need for asylum.

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