Trump says immigration roundup will start next week

Trump says immigration roundup will start next week
  • Clock-gray 03:29
  • calendar-gray 19 June 2019

U.S. President Donald Trump said on Tuesday an immigration roundup will start next week, but did not give details about the planned action, which House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi denounced as a “mass deportation dragnet,” APA reports citing Reuters.

Trump, who was speaking to reporters at the White House before a trip to Florida, praised Mexico for action he said it had taken in recent days to stem the flow of immigrants to the United States.

The Republican president wrote in a tweet on Monday that U.S. authorities would next week begin the process of removing millions of immigrants who are in the United States illegally.

Responding to a reporter who said immigration officials did not know about his planned action, Trump said on Tuesday: “They know, they know. They’re going to start next week, and with people coming to our country, and they come in illegally - they have to go out.”

Pelosi, the top Democratic elected official, said in a statement: “The President’s new threat of a mass deportation dragnet is an act of utter malice and bigotry, designed solely to inject fear in our communities.”

There are an estimated 12 million immigrants who are in the United States illegally, mainly from Mexico and Central America.

Under a deal reached earlier this month, Mexico has agreed to take Central American immigrants seeking asylum in the United States until their cases are heard in U.S. courts.

The agreement, which included Mexico pledging to deploy National Guard troops to stop Central American immigrants from reaching the U.S. border, averted a Trump threat to hit Mexican imports with tariffs.

“Mexico has been doing a very good job the last four days. ... I appreciate the job they’re doing,” Trump said.

“Guatemala, likewise is much different than it was under past administrations, so we’ll see how that works out,” he said without giving details.

U.S. Vice President Mike Pence suggested last week that Guatemala could receive asylum seekers from its neighbors as a so-called safe third country.

Guatemala’s interior minister, Enrique Degenhart, said on Tuesday his country had not committed to becoming a safe third country

“We have not said we accept being a safe third country. ... We’re in discussions to find a measure that suits both countries,” Degenhart told reporters, saying he welcomed that the United States saw Guatemala as a “safe country.”

U.S. rights group Human Rights First has said it was “simply ludicrous” for the United States to assert that Guatemala was capable of protecting refugees, when its own citizens are fleeing violence.

Faiq Mahmudov

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