News

El Paso One of Three Borders To Open For Asylum Seekers

On February 19, 2021, over 65,000 asylum seekers who are stuck in México under the Trump administration’s Remain in Mexico program, will be allowed into the country to make their asylum cases. About 300 migrants will be allowed though three border points daily.

Although the Biden administration did not identify the three borders that will process the asylum requests, Rep. Henry Cuellar (D-TX) told the Associated Press on February 13, 2021 that El Paso will be one of the three ports of entry that will be opened to asylum seekers.

There are an estimated 20,000 asylum seekers in Juárez, although the actual number is unknown.

The two other ports of entry, according to Cuellar, are Brownsville and San Isidro.

The United Nations will help with notifying and processing asylum seekers into the United States. The International Organization for Migration will help queue up the immigrants and test them for Covid-19.

Under Biden’s initiative, 25,000 asylum seekers will be processed at about 300 per day. Only migrants who have open cases for asylum will be processed.

The asylum seekers must register their cases online or by telephone and wait to be notified on when to report to the border crossing point to be processed in.

Hurdles Remain

Although the Biden administration has suspended the Remain Mexico program, many migrants continue to be deported. Some U.S. officials are resisting Biden’s immigration reforms and states like Texas are challenging them in court.

Under Title 21, immigrants caught by border agencies are being deported for health concerns under expedited removals because of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Lack of access to internet and telephones will make it difficult for asylum seekers to queue up. However, immigrant advocates along with the UN will seek to help them out.

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