U.S. vows to repatriate quake evacuees
The Naples Daily News in Florida reports that that U.S could see a mass influx of Haitian migrants as a result of the devastating earthquake that shook the country early in January.
Although many countries have sent aid to Haiti in the form of food, water, equipment and manpower, there have been many obstacles in delivering the aid. There are no reports of a mass exodus from Haiti as of yet. However, as the situation in Haiti continues to destabilize, U.S. officials want to prepare in case of a large migration from Haiti to the United States materializes.
The Department of Homeland Security has begun to relocate between 250 and 400 immigration detainees from South Florida’s main detention center to accommodate any Haitian migrants who manage to reach U.S. shores. Under the mass migration plan known as Operation Vigilant Sentry, Haitian vessels found at sea will be intercepted by the U.S Navy and repatriated to Haiti. There are also talks that intercepted vessels carrying Haitian migrants will be temporarily sent to the U.S Naval Base at Guantanamo Bay in order to process the migrants’ claims.
Only those Haitians who were in the United States before January 12, 2010 will be granted Temporary Protected Status and not repatriated to the earthquake-torn nation.
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CA governor floats idea to jail illegal prisoners in Mexico
The San Francisco Chronicle is reporting that California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger responded to questions about state spending by saying that the state could save 1 billion by building and operating prisons in Mexico. The Governor explained that the state’s budget could be spared by building jails in Mexico to house undocumented felons currently imprisoned in California. Schwarzenegger then went on to say that the money saved could be spent on higher education.
Yet the report states that although California spends more than $8 billion a year on the prison system, only about 19,000 of the state's 171,000 or 1.1% of the prisoners are unauthorized immigrants. Later a spokesman for the governor said that Schwarzenegger's comments did not represent a concrete proposal and the figure was an estimate.
The Governor’s comments were made after a federal court mandated that the state reduce its inmate population by 40,000 over the next two years. However, critics of the Governor’s comments state that there is no obligation for a country such as Mexico to incarcerate people who have not committed crimes within the country’s border, nor would it be feasible to run a California state prison on the sovereign territory of another country.
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German Homeschoolers Granted Political Asylum
Travis Loller, of the Associated Press, has reported that a German family has been granted political asylum in The United States in order to home school their children. Uwe Romeike, his wife and five children have been living in Morristown, Tennessee for the past two years.
In Germany, school attendance is mandatory and home schooling in not an option. Mr. Romeike, however, chose to home school his children, stating, “During the last 10-20 years, the curriculum in public schools has been more and more against Christian values.” After his children were forcibly escorted to school in 2006 by German police, and facing the possibility of having his children removed by the state after a 2007 German court ruling allowing social services workers to remove children from their families in severe cases, Mr. Romeike chose to leave the country.
On January 26th, Immigration Judge Lawrence Burman, of Memphis Tennessee, passed down the ruling allowing Mr. Romeike and his family to stay in the United States. The US Government can still appeal the decision.
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IL county board demonstrates support for amnesty
WBBM News in Chicago reports that the Cook County Board overwhelmingly voted to urge the Illinois’ Congressional delegation to support legislation for immigration reform that creates a pathway to citizenship for many of those here illegally.
This vote comes at a time when it is believed that the federal agenda will include immigration legislation in the near future. Thus, the Cook County Board in Illinois made it a point to officially report its support of the effort.
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Nationwide sweep rounds up ‘gangsters’
The San Antonio Express News reports that U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officials have arrested hundreds of gang members in a weeklong operation called Project Big Freeze. The operation targeted transnational gangs and made 476 arrests in 83 United States cities.
Operation Big Freeze is an ongoing effort coordinated by federal, state, and local law enforcement in hopes to dismantle transnational crime and domestic violence associated with these gangs.
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