Asylum | Texas Public Radio

Asylum

It was never easy for migrants to win asylum cases in U.S. immigration courts. But now, it's nearly impossible.

Out of tens of thousands of migrants who have arrived at the southern border in recent months, just 117 have been granted protection by a judge. That's according to the latest immigration court data released Thursday by the TRAC Immigration project at Syracuse University.

An encampment in Matamoros, Mexico, is a stopping point for asylum-seekers who are waiting for a chance at legal entry into the United States.

The conditions at the encampment are poor but a group of U.S. volunteers called Team Brownsville is crossing the border daily to help.

From Texas Standard:

A growing number of asylum-seekers are setting up makeshift camps on the Mexican side of the southern border, across from El Paso, while they await hearings with U.S. immigration officials. Some wait weeks or even months for that appointment. But now, the Trump administration is testing a secretive program called Prompt Asylum Claim Review to fast-track those hearings.

The United States and El Salvador signed an agreement Friday aimed at deterring the flow of migrants seeking to enter this country by requiring them to seek asylum in that Central American nation on their way here.

Bonnie Petrie | Texas Public Radio

It's been five months since San Antonio opened its Migrant Resource Center downtown, and in that time tens of thousands of asylum-seekers have spent time in San Antonio before moving on to their final destinations. 


One day last week in Nuevo Laredo, Mexico, a fearsome gun battle broke out on the main boulevard to the airport, as drivers careened off the thoroughfare in terror while rival narcos blasted away at each other.

The Cartel of the Northeast operates with impunity here, cruising around town in armored, olive-drab pickups with Tropas del Infierno, Spanish for "Soldiers from Hell," emblazoned on the doors.

Scott Nicol / Sierra Club Borderlands Team

Last week the Trump administration issued a strict new policy that requires migrants to first apply for asylum in a country they passed through en route to the United States, before applying for asylum in the U.S. The rule already faces legal challenges.

  

Customs and Border Protection officials are denying that a Border Patrol agent asked a 3-year-old girl to choose which of her parents would be sent back to Mexico.

Anna Surinyach | MSF

The situation on the border isn’t getting any better. The flow of asylum seekers from a destabilized Central America is running into a politically charged federal government response that is not focused humanitarian aid.


Thousands of asylum-seekers from Central America, Cuba and elsewhere have massed in Mexican border cities, waiting and hoping to be granted legal entry to the United States. They have created a humanitarian crisis, and they're growing impatient.

Responding to that crisis, the Trump administration threatened last week to impose tariffs to pressure Mexico to block the streams of migrants who are crossing its southern border bound for the United States.

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