Trump restricts asylum at the US-Mexico border

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The Trump administration took a major step on Thursday to restrict asylum claims by migrants, putting forward a regulation that would make individuals ineligible for asylum if they cross the United States southern border illegally.

The restrictions rely on authorities Trump cited when implement his travel ban in early 2017, the Post reported. "Under current practice, border agents are repeatedly turning asylum-seekers away and telling them to come back another day".

Last week, a group of parents travelling with their children in the caravan, filed a lawsuit against the Trump administration, saying the president "continues to abuse the law, including constitutional rights to deter Central Americans from exercising their lawful right to seek asylum in the United States".

Administration officials have said existing U.S. asylum rules encouraged illegal immigration and bogged down legitimate claims.

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This summer, multiple news outlets reported that hundreds of migrants who had legally presented themselves to US agents at official ports of entry, like San Ysidro, California and El Paso, Texas, were told that their asylum requests could not be processed.

Over 5,200 USA troops have been sent to the border to erect razor-wire fences and provide surveillance and logistical support to the National Guardsmen and Customs and Border Patrol agents already there.

The change to asylum procedures was published Thursday by the Justice Department.

Men line up for donated drinking water, after scores of Central American migrants, representing the thousands participating in a caravan trying to reach the US border, undertook an hours-long march to the office of the United Nations humans rights body in Mexico City on Thursday.

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Currently, US asylum rules do not bar people who enter the country without authorisation, and the Immigration and Nationality Act, which governs the US immigration system, specifically allows people who arrive in the United States, whether or not they do so at a designated port of entry, to apply for asylum. But many migrants are unaware of that guidance, and official border crossings have grown clogged.

"Asylum-seekers have been left to camp out for days and weeks on bridges at the border, when they should be guaranteed a right to enter the country for a fair hearing". The U.S. took in approximately 200,000 refugees per year in 1980, and the total had never fallen below 70,000 before Trump entered office. "They clearly and explicitly meant to make asylum available to anyone who reaches the United States".

Mr. Trump has also threatened to end birthright citizenship through executive order, although he has yet to do so. Most have passed largely unnoticed.

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