(Only) 237 Somalis have been removed from US since last October; not thousands! by Ann Corcoran on April 30, 2017
I was pretty excited to report here that we were stepping up deportations of illegal alien/criminal Somalis, that thousands would be removed. But, now I see that even that administration effort is really not much to write home about!
The news here, if it is accurate, is that ICE won’t arrest illegal Somalis (who are not in detention) at their homes or work places. Already, “sensitive places” such as schools, places of worship and hospitals are off limits.
So are we expected to believe that federal agents are going to wait on the streets to nab them coming and going from home to mosque? Only, if we hire a lot more agents!
Over the many years I’ve written RRW there would be flurries of pronouncements that Somalis in the country illegally would be sent back to Somalia and each time there would follow squishy, mealy-mouthed discussions about how can we do such a thing (send people back) because Somalia is still a hellhole!
Is Somalia ever NOT going to be a hellhole? Is this administration headed that way (to weakness and squishy talk) again?
In case you missed it, Trump has admitted 1,359 supposedly persecuted (by whom?) Somalis since inauguration day.
According to Wrapsnet (as of today) the US ‘welcomed’ 5,167 Somalis in FY17 (so far). And, we are supposed to be excited by the removal of 237 of them in that same time frame? Net gain is 4,930 since October of 2016!
Here is the latest at Voice of America:
Somalia’s ambassador to the U.S., Ahmed Isse Awad, says U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has informed his embassy the agency will no longer arrest illegal Somali immigrants in their homes or at their workplaces. However, federal authorities have not confirmed that there has been any shift in policy.
Awad said the agency reached the decision after his embassy expressed concern to immigration authorities regarding the recent arrests of 11 Somalis in Virginia, Minnesota and Georgia.
“Once we found out that 11 Somalis were arrested from their homes for removal, we thought the arrests looked [like] profiling and targeting Somalis. Then we submitted our concern to ICE and asked clarification,” Awad told VOA’s Somali service. “Fortunately, they came back to us tell us that they would no longer arrest Somalis from their homes or at their workplaces.”
However officials have previously said that ICE does not have specific exemptions in place for certain groups of people. The agency policy currently directs that anyone in violation of immigration laws may be subject to arrest, detention and removal from the United States.
Authorities say the agency’s policy directs personnel to avoid conducting enforcement activists at “sensitive places” such as schools, places of worship and hospitals, unless they have prior approval from a supervisor.
The U.S. government said almost 5,000 Somali nationals in the United States face deportation orders. “As of April 1, 2017, there were 4,801 Somali nationals with final orders of removal,” ICE spokesman Brendan Raedy said last week. “As of that same date, 237 Somali nationals have been removed to Somalia in fiscal year 2017.”
Most of the Somalis facing final orders of removal are not in detention centers and are unlikely to be removed in the near term because their cases are making their way through the system. [I thought they said most had failed their asylum bids?—ed]
Since Somalia’s embassy in Washington reopened in November 2015, the ambassador said, about 170 Somali immigrants who either ran afoul of U.S. law or had their asylum applications rejected have been deported to Mogadishu, the Somali capital.
Most of those previously deported had applied for, but been denied, political asylum in the United States, he added. Another group of Somali applicants whose requests for asylum have been denied are now in detention centers or prisons, awaiting deportation.
Big Whoop! Fewer than 300 Somalis are scheduled to be moved out in the next couple of months, Awad told VOA, adding that his embassy was awaiting information from U.S. authorities on who the deportees were and when they would depart. And, as soon as they get that information, they will tell those Somalis to head to Canada ASAP!
See our category ‘Trump Watch’ for more on what Trump has changed and what he hasn’t changed regarding refugees.