U.S. to Give Asylum Seekers Rejected under ‘Remain in Mexico’ Policy Second Chance to Apply

POLITICS & POLICY
U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents call the names of asylum seekers that have a court hearing that day as a group of migrants, who returned to Mexico to await their U.S. asylum hearing, block the Puerta Mexico international border crossing bridge to demand a speedier asylum process, in Matamoros, Mexico, October 10, 2019. (Veronica G. Cardenas/Reuters)

The U.S. will give asylum seekers whose applications were denied or dismissed under the Trump administration’s Remain in Mexico policy a second chance to apply, the Associated Press reported on Tuesday.

The Remain in Mexico guidelines ordered asylum seekers to wait in Mexico while their cases were processed in the U.S. On Wednesday, the Department of Homeland Security will open registration to applicants who were processed under the Remain in Mexico policy but were denied asylum or had their cases dismissed.

It is unclear how many people will be allowed to apply under the new guidelines, a DHS official told the AP. Many may have already left the Mexico-U.S. border region, and the official said the DHS was aware of the possibility that migrants could attempt to return. Around 32,000 asylum seekers were denied asylum under the Remain in Mexico policy, while another 7,000 had their cases dismissed.

President Biden ended the Remain in Mexico policy on his first day in office, and asylum seekers have gradually been allowed to enter the U.S. while their cases are processed.

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The Biden administration has faced an unprecedented surge in illegal immigration at the southern border, despite administration officials imploring migrants not to make the journey. Border Patrol agents encountered 180,000 migrants in May of this year, almost 179,000 in April, and over 173,000 in March. Illegal border crossings in May ranked the highest in 20 years.

Around 38 percent of migrants detained in May had been previously stopped at the border with in the past twelve months.

“The large number of expulsions during the pandemic has contributed to a larger-than-usual number of noncitizens making multiple border crossing attempts, and means total encounters somewhat overstate the number of unique individuals arriving at the border,” U.S. Customs and Border Patrol said in a statement earlier this month.

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