Biden Administration To Allow 25,000 Asylum-Seekers To Cross US-Mexico Border While Cases Are Pending


Around 25,000 asylum-seekers who were ordered under former President Donald Trump to wait in Mexico while U. S. immigration courts processed their requests will now be allowed to cross the border starting next week, the Biden administration announced Friday.

The Department of Homeland Security said the change in plans for those currently placed in Migrant Protection Protocols (MPP) — often referred to as “Remain in Mexico” — will go into effect on Feb. 19. The Trump administration introduced the policy in January 2019 and said it was critical to reversing a surge of asylum-seekers that peaked that year.

“As President Biden has made clear, the U. S. government is committed to rebuilding a safe, orderly, and humane immigration system,” Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas said in a statement. “This latest action is another step in our commitment to reform immigration policies that do not align with our nation’s values.”

The Biden administration estimates that around 25,000 individuals enrolled in the protocols still have active cases.

“Individuals should not take any action at this time and should remain where they are to await further instructions,” Homeland Security said Friday. “We will soon announce a virtual registration process that will be accessible from any location.”

“Individuals outside of the United States who were not returned to Mexico under MPP or who do not have active immigration court cases will not be considered for participation in this program and should await further instructions,” the department added.

Homeland Security also warned migrants Friday that the announcement “should not be interpreted as an opening for people to migrate irregularly to the United States.

“Eligible individuals will only be allowed to enter through designated ports of entry at designated times,” it added.

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