US Plans To Reinstate ‘Remain In Mexico’ Policy Next Month

SAN DIEGO (AP) — The Biden administration said it plans to reinstate a Trump-era border policy next month to make asylum-seekers wait in Mexico for hearings in U.S. immigration court, complying with a judge’s order.

It hinges on approval of the Mexican government, which has raised concerns that U.S. officials are working to address, the Justice Department said in a court filing late Thursday. Mexico wants cases to generally conclude within six months and ensure that asylum-seekers have timely and accurate information about hearing dates and times and better access to legal counsel.

Mexico also wants exemptions for “particularly vulnerable populations” and better coordination on locations and times of day that asylum-seekers are returned to Mexico.

About 70,000 asylum-seekers have been subject to the “Remain in Mexico” policy, known officially as “Migrant Protection Protocols,” which President Donald Trump introduced in January 2019 and Biden suspended on his first day in office. A federal judge sided with the states of Texas and Missouri by ordering the Biden administration in August to reinstate the policy “in good faith.” The court filing says it should be in effect around mid-November.

U.S. District Judge Matthew Kacsmaryk in Amarillo, Texas, a Trump appointee, left open the possibility that the administration could try again to end the policy, and officials say they will release a plan soon that they hope will survive legal scrutiny.

U.S. Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas ended the policy in June after an internal review, saying it achieved “mixed effectiveness.”

Illegal border crossings fell sharply after Mexico, facing Trump’s threat of higher tariffs, acquiesced in 2019 to the policy’s rapid expansion. Asylum-seekers were victims of major violence while waiting in Mexico and faced a slew of legal obstacles, such as access to attorneys and case information.

By Elliot Spagat for THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
Read Full Article HERE

Share this post