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Trump expands executive overreach – ends asylum protections for migrants in Central America coming to US

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The US is facing a surge in migrant arrivals from Guatemala and other impoverished Central American countries which are plagued by gang violence AFP/File / Paul Ratje

In a new and expansive executive action President Donald Trump has created a new rule that ends asylum protections for migrants traveling from Central America to the United States.

Those seeking asylum who pass through another country before applying for U.S. asylum will be deemed automatically ineligible for asylum protections.

The Associated Press reports the new rule is “expected to go into effect on Tuesday, also applies to children who have crossed the border alone.”

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There are a few exceptions, including for those who have been victims of trafficking.

The problem is that U.S. law states that those seeking asylum must be on U.S soil in order to do so. U.S. law also states it is not illegal to enter the U.S. to apply for asylum.

“To obtain asylum through the affirmative asylum process you must be physically present in the United States,” the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s own website states. “You may apply for asylum status regardless of how you arrived in the United States or your current immigration status.”

Affirmative asylum simply means requesting asylum before a deportation order.

The move will likely be challenged in court and may be blocked since it appears to violate U.S. law.

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