Under new rules put in place by the Department of Homeland Security, asylum seekers must come directly from the nations they are fleeing.
By John Friend
In an effort to combat the widespread use of fraudulent asylum claims by migrants hoping to gain entry to the United States, the Trump administration announced new guidelines earlier this month that make it more difficult for Third World migrants to claim asylum.
According to the new rules, those seeking asylum in the United States will be deemed ineligible if they passed through another country before reaching a port of entry to the United States, with some limited exceptions. The vast majority of current asylum seekers make their way through Mexico and other Central American nations before attempting to apply for asylum in the United States. Many such cases are marred by fraudulent claims, including fraudulent familial ties, fraudulent immigration documents, and fraudulent persecution claims.
The Departments of Homeland Security and Justice announced the new rule in a joint statement earlier this month, which was then published in the Federal Register.
“The departments are amending their respective regulations to provide that, with limited exceptions, an alien who enters or attempts to enter the United States across the southern border after failing to apply for protection in a third country outside the alien’s country of citizenship, nationality, or last lawful habitual residence through which the alien transited en route to the United States is ineligible for asylum,” the new rule states, as reported by The Hill, a popular and oft-quoted publication focusing on political developments in Washington, D.C.
The new rule is necessary, according to Trump administration officials, due to the increasing number of asylum applicants and floods of migrants attempting to gain entry to the United States. Ports of entry and immigration officers have been overwhelmed in recent months by the sheer number of migrants and asylum seekers, including countless cases involving vulnerable populations, including young adults and children. Immigration officials and border patrol agents are operating in extremely difficult environments, particularly as fraudulent asylum claims skyrocket and opportunistic and dishonest migrants desperately attempt to illegally enter the country.
“The United States is a generous country but is being completely overwhelmed by the burdens associated with apprehending and processing hundreds of thousands of aliens along the southern border,” Attorney General William Barr said in a statement following the announcement of the new asylum rule. “This rule will decrease forum shopping by economic migrants and those who seek to exploit our asylum system to obtain entry to the United States—while ensuring that no one is removed from the United States who is more likely than not to be tortured or persecuted on account of a protected ground.”
The new rule comes as President Trump has been criticized by immigration hawks who contend his administration has not done enough to protect the country’s borders and fulfill his signature campaign promises, including building a wall along the southern border. A recent report published by the Washington Examiner argues that no new border wall or fence has been built under the Trump administration, a claim the president has criticized and denied on Twitter.
Since entering the White House, the Trump administration has been stymied and obstructed by both Congress and various activist judges from implementing many key aspects of his populist immigration agenda. Leading Democrats, including House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and many of the top Democratic presidential contenders, proudly support open borders and decriminalizing illegal immigration.
Matthew Albence, President Trump’s acting head of Immigration and Customs Enforcement, recently criticized members of Congress for openly assisting illegal immigrants to evade U.S. immigration law.
“There were people in Congress sitting there giving instructions to people illegally in the country and telling them how to avoid detection and avoid the consequences of their illegal activity,” Albence told reporters recently.
The Trump administration no doubt will continue to face obstacles from Congress, the judiciary, the fake news media, and radical left-wing activist groups as it attempts to deal with the ongoing immigration crisis.
John Friend is a freelance author based in California.