US President Donald Trump (File Photo)
US President Donald Trump (File Photo)

Trump's asylum ban for migrants blocked by federal judge

ANI | Updated: Nov 20, 2018 17:48 IST

California [United States], Nov 20 (ANI): A United States federal judge on Tuesday nullified the President Donald Trump-led administration's decision of refusing asylum to immigrants who enter the US mainland from Central America.
The ruling was pronounced by Judge Jon S. Tigar of the US District Court for California, who was nominated to the court in 2012 by former President Barack Obama. Tigar also passed restraining orders after conducting proceedings in San Francisco, Fox News reported. The White House will likely challenge Tigar's ruling.
"Whatever the scope of the president's authority, he may not rewrite the immigration laws to impose a condition that Congress has expressly forbidden," The New York Times quoted Tigar's order as saying.
The Trump administration had on November 9 sanctioned a proclamation, saying that none of the immigrants entering the US from the southern border will be eligible for asylum. His order came when the first waves of immigrants had started entering the US.
The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and the Centre for Constitutional Rights had requested the court to consider overturning Trump's order. The two non-profit organisations had filed lawsuits against Trump following his asylum ban.
In their complaint, the group alleged that the government violated Congress' "clear command that manner of entry cannot constitute a categorical asylum bar," adding that they breached federal laws by not allowing public views in the matter.
"Individuals are entitled to asylum if they cross between ports of entry. It couldn't be clearer," said Baher Azmy, a lawyer for the Center for Constitutional Rights.
Illegal migrants are often arrested at the borders and have to resort to asylum or another form of protection.
Following the hearing, ACLU lawyer Lee Gelernt said, "The court made clear that the administration does not have the power to override Congress and that, absent judicial intervention, real harm will occur."
On Monday, north-bound traffic from the border areas was closed by the US for several hours for the installation of new security barriers. Additionally, one of the pedestrian crossings at the San Ysidro crossing was closed, evidently to restrict the incoming migrants from crossing the border.
Only 100 asylum claims per day are being processed by the US border inspectors at the crossing between Mexico's Tijuana and San Diego in California. (ANI)