Tijuana City Fears a Crisis Due to the US Restriction on Asylum

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U.S. authorities will deport those who fail to meet strict asylum standards when the number of daily detentions at the border exceeds 2,500.

Tijuana fears becoming the epicenter of a new humanitarian crisis following a new executive order from U.S. President Joe Biden that limits asylum requests and speeds up deportations.

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Human rights activists rejected Biden’s measure as risky and restrictive. Paulina Olvera Cañez, director of the organization Espacio Migrante, said that the new executive order reproduces the strategies of Donald Trump (2017-2021), such as the Migrant Protection Protocols or the “Remain in Mexico” policy.

“When Biden was campaigning, he condemned those policies and promised to eliminate them,” she recalled.

Biden’s order allowa U.S. authorities to deport those who fail to meet strict asylum standards when the number of daily detentions at the border exceeds 2,500 for an average of seven days.

“These are policies that do not work and only force people to remain in Mexico for long periods,” Olvera Cañez said, adding that people need international protection, especially in northern cities such as Tijuana, Nogales, and Juarez, where migrants are victims of violence, kidnappings, and extortion.

We reject the Home Secretary’s comments about asylum seekers lying about their mental health. At Refugee Resource people come to us because they are suffering mental distress, with many feeling suicidal. https://t.co/EFF2JMjFeM pic.twitter.com/bPUDMU8PGb

— Refugee Resource (@RefugeeOxford) June 5, 2024

“These measures also force people to resort to human traffickers and to cross through more dangerous places, such as the desert or the river,” she said, lamenting that the Democratic Party is using the migration issue as part of its electoral strategy.

“It is not a good outlook. It is very concerning that when the number of asylum seekers reaches its limit, authorities will immediately deport them,” Olvera Cañez pointed out.

Enrique Lucero, head of the Municipal Directorate for Migrant Assistance (DMAM) in Tijuana, agreed that Biden’s policies could “overwhelm” shelters, which are currently at 60 percent occupancy.

“However, we are waiting to see what the Mexican government’s stance will be on this announcement and what actions will be taken to address this situation. This measure does not solve the underlying problem, and migrants will continue arriving in the city to seek asylum in the United States,” he commented, explaining that the measure does not imply the total closure of the border, nor of the international ports of San Ysidro, El Chaparral, and Otay.

“The closure is specific to people who cross irregularly,” the DMAM director clarified.

#MexicoDecides | Mexico elects a new president today. In Los Angeles, United States, the largest Mexican migrant population also participates in the electoral process. Luis Gutierrez has the details. pic.twitter.com/MFrqaXLFXc

— teleSUR English (@telesurenglish) June 2, 2024

Source: EFE

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