Published: Fri, June 22, 2018
Worldwide | By Jermaine Blake

DOJ asks judge to remove 20-day limit on detaining immigrant families

DOJ asks judge to remove 20-day limit on detaining immigrant families

U.S. President Donald Trump said on Wednesday he would sign something "pre-emptive" soon to solve the problem of immigrant families being separated at the U.S. southern border, which has sparked outrage in the United States and overseas.

However, those caught will continue to face misdemeanor charges.

Sitting in the Oval Office June 20, Trump signed an executive order that directed the Homeland Security Department to "maintain custody of alien families" while their cases move through the immigration system, "to the extent permitted by law and subject to the availability of appropriations". "It is still very early and we are awaiting further guidance on the matter".

Video footage of children sitting in cages and an audiotape of wailing children had sparked anger as the images were broadcast worldwide.

Members of Congress are set to vote on new United States immigration measures, but President Donald Trump has suggested Republicans' plans could be doomed.

Passage of the bill was always a long shot, but failure may now come at a steeper price as Republicans - and Trump - have raised expectations that, as the party in control of Congress and the White House, they can fix the nation's long-standing immigration problems.

Instead of Trump taking a loss and showing that his influence among House Republicans may not be as strong as perceived, the blame for the immigration bills going down will mostly be placed on the shoulders of Speaker Paul Ryan and other House GOP leaders.

The action, according to people familiar with it, wouldnt end the zero tolerance policy, but would aim to keep families together.

"I want to be very clear on this".

"I sensed he was very sad", she says.

"You need some deterrent so they don't think that anyone who wants to come across the border, as long as they have children, can do so".

He said he was looking into whether the court could block deportation of parents until they have been reunited with their children, and whether it could force the Trump administration to reunite those separated.

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The entire effort is yet another embarrassment for House Republicans, who waded into the contentious immigration debate only to see the effort crash and burn thanks to Trump and the hard-liners in their caucus.

Meanwhile, other administration officials, including Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Secretary of Homeland Security Kirstjen Nielsen, have encouraged asylum-seekers to try and enter the country through official ports of entry.

After an anonymous official in the Trump administration told the Washington Post that they will stop prosecuting migrant parents who cross the border illegally with children, a spokesperson at the Department of Justice rebutted the claim.

The administration has consistently said that it was forced to separate families because of a court case known as "the Flores Settlement".

"There has to be some substantial change in circumstances that merits a change in the agreement", said Gulasekaram.

"I'm directing HHS, DHS and DOJ to work together to keep illegal immigrant families together during the immigration process and reunite these previously separated groups".

Then he signed an executive order to end the policy. It also doesn't change anything yet for the some 2,300 children taken from their families since the policy was put into place.

The Republican-controlled U.S. Congress is considering legislation to address the issue.

"What is the objective of the House doing good immigration bills when you need 9 votes by Democrats in the Senate, and the Dems are only looking to Obstruct (which they feel is good for them in the Mid-Terms)", Trump wrote.

"Some day, they are going to vote for Democrats", Trump said of people crossing the border.

Immigrant children held in a detention centre in Virginia say they were handcuffed, beaten, left nude in concrete cells and strapped to chairs with bags over their heads, the Associated Press reported.

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