Biden faces a potential new refugee crisis in the turmoil in Haiti, Cuba


Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mallorcus said this week that anyone considering boating out of Cuba or Haiti would not be allowed to seek asylum in the United States, even if they showed certain fear of persecution in their own country. I warned.

“When you go to the sea, you never come to America,” says Mallorcus. Cuban refugees He fled the Fidel Castro administration with his family in 1960, he said at a press conference on Tuesday.

“This risk is not worth taking,” he said, saying that 20 people have died during such voyages in recent weeks. “Immigrants intercepted at sea, regardless of nationality, are not allowed to enter the United States.”

Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mallorcas spoke with the media in June with Vice President Kamala Harris on the right and Veronica Escobar, a member of El Paso, Texas, on the left.

Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mallorcus, adjacent to Vice President Kamala Harris (right) and Congressman Veronica Escobar, Texas, in June in El Paso, Texas. (Evelyn Hoxtine / Reuters)

White House spokesman Jen Psaki’s comments on Mallorcus echoed Wednesday did not reflect changes in US policy, and according to Mallorcus, the recent surge in immigrants encountered off the United States from both countries. It was not issued in response to. Cuba and Haiti are currently facing significant political turmoil.

Instead, the warning was a pre-emptive move by the Biden administration to avoid a potential Caribbean immigration crisis resulting from the simultaneous turmoil that first unfolded in Haiti after the assassination of President Jovenel Moise last week. It seems. This week, an unprecedented national protest against the long-standing communist regime broke out.

Only six months after taking office, migrants have been seriously political for President Biden, who has promised to replace his predecessor’s hard-line policies with a more humane and welcoming approach to migrants, especially refugees and asylum seekers. It has already emerged as an issue. .. Still, the current crisis in Haiti and Cuba shows the pitfalls facing the US president trying to deal with immigration policy.

Upon entering the White House in January, Biden sent Congress a radical immigration reform bill and signed a series of executive orders to lift some restrictions during the Trump era. These first actions will have little practical impact on immigrants seeking asylum in the United States, but the new president, with the help of smugglers, has spread rapidly to vulnerable communities in Mexico and the central region. The word America will welcome more immigrants. By late March, Mallorcus said the US border guard was “at a pace of encountering more individuals on the southwestern border than in the last two decades.”

The majority of migrants are still exiled from the border under pandemic-related policies inherited from the Trump era, but Republicans have seized the influx and declared Biden’s policies to have caused a “border crisis.”

Demonstrators protested and chanted a rare protest against the Cuban Communist government in Havana last Sunday.

Demonstrators made a rare protest against the Communist Party of Cuba in Havana last Sunday. (Yamil Lage / AFP via Getty Images)

Musafer Chisti, senior researcher at the nonpartisan Immigration Policy Institute and director of the NYU School of Law, was politically accused of Mallorcus issuing harsh warnings to potential immigrants from Cuba and Haitian. He said it was against the background.

Mr. Chisti described the current state of the US-Mexico border as a “recognized political crisis” that “Republicans are too enthusiastic about exploitation”, but “unless this crisis subsides, new people will be on the coast and borders. The ground is trying to add fuel to their fire. “

Government data Shows that more and more Cuban and Haiti immigrants, who have historically received dramatically different treatments in the United States, have arrived before recent events that have plagued both countries.

Mallorcus said on Tuesday that U.S. officials had not encountered an influx of migrant vessels to Florida, but Haiti and Cuba have a history of simultaneous domestic crises and overlapping waves of refugees going out into the sea. ..

Senator Marco Rubio, whose parents emigrated from Cuba to the United States two years before Castro came to power on Monday, raised the possibility that Cuba’s current cataclysm could lead to another escape. Biden in the letter “Any effort to encourage mass immigration warns the administration that it will be considered and treated as hostile action against the United States.”

Haiti's army is guarding the bridge between the Dominican Republic and Haiti. The border was closed after President Haiti was assassinated on July 8.

Haiti’s army is guarding the border between the Dominican Republic and Haiti, which was closed after the assassination of President Haiti on July 7. (Ricardo Rojas / Reuters)

Many for immigrant and refugee advocates Celebrated Biden’s choice Mallorcus’s warning to Cuban and Haiti immigrants for the Secretary of Homeland Security seemed to serve as a reminder of the contradictory, hard-line Trump policy in place. Biden’s promise “Humanically comply with our law and protect the dignity of migrant families, refugees and asylum seekers.”

In a statement on Tuesday, Amnesty International USA’s refugee and migrant rights researcher Dennis Bell called Mallorcus’s comments “shameful” and called the Biden administration “shameful.” [its] Promised a commitment to human rights and racial justice. “

“In the event of a serious crisis in Haiti and Cuba, the United States has full rights to seek asylum rather than restricting access based on how people arrive, handling it offshore, and resettling in a third country. We need to support it, “Bell said.

Under U.S. and international law, foreigners who express fear of persecution in their own country can seek asylum. No matter how they enter the United States However, US officials have been blocking Haiti and Cuban immigrants trying to reach the country by boat for decades.In the past, only a small number of refugee candidates Guantanamo Bay Naval Base For interviews with asylum-seekers, and if their allegations are justified See third countryFor resettlement, like Australia.

Haitians gather outside the US Embassy after the assassination of President Jobnermoise in Port-au-Prince, Haiti on July 9.

Haitians will meet outside the US Embassy in Port-au-Prince on July 9, after the assassination of President Jovenel Moise. (Estaïlove St-val / Reuters)

As a candidate, Biden also promised to return to his previous state. Family reunification parole program For the people of Haiti and Cuba that had been End under playing cards.. At a press conference on Tuesday, Mallorcus said the DHS was evaluating these programs, but they have not been reopened to date. He also said that new arrivals from Haiti quoted Haiti’s “serious security concerns, social unrest, increased human rights abuses, catastrophic poverty, and lack” for the country in May. Of the basic resources exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic, which stated that it would not be subject to the temporary protection status announced in. “

DHS First designated Haiti Due to the Temporary Protected State (TPS) of 2010 after the country was devastated by a catastrophic earthquake. The designation, which does not lead to green cards or other permanent immigration status, has been extended several times until January 2018, when the Trump administration announced that it would end special consideration for Haiti, with approximately 50,000 Haiti TPS holders. At risk of deportation However, due to several proceedings, protection remained valid.

Proponents estimated that the Biden administration’s new TPS designation could benefit an additional 100,000 Haitians arriving in the United States after 2010. May effect.

Supporters of the Cuban government will travel to the streets of Havana in early July.

Supporters of the Cuban government will travel to the streets of Havana in early July. (Stringer / Reuters)

Kids in Need, a non-profit legal aid organization, despite Mallorcus’ attempts to highlight the very serious and sometimes deadly risks associated with crossing the Caribbean Sea by boat, especially during the hurricane season. Wendy Young, president of the Defense (KIND), argued that the government was making efforts to discourage Cubans and Haitians seeking security in the United States “fear and despair to drive such migration. “I can’t admit it,” so it’s “ineffective.”

“Rhetoric from Washington does not discourage them from seeking safety, because they have no alternative course of action,” she said. “When they are at home, they face serious harm and, in some cases, death.”

Such a declaration continued, “These children and families are at greater risk because they are forced to take more dangerous routes to avoid discovery.”

Recent government data suggests that it is already happening. on Tuesday, Mallorcus told reporters U.S. officials have encountered 470 Cubans and 313 Haitians at sea so far this year, compared to 49 Cubans and 430 Haitians blocked by the Coast Guard during fiscal year 2020. .. Despite pressure from supporters, Biden has not yet lifted public health orders during the Trump era, allowing border guards to oust most migrants, including asylum seekers, on the US-Mexico border. Detained along.

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