The stories we are publishing today in observance of World Refugee Day are powerful examples of individuals who have overcome obstacles thrust upon them through no fault of their own. They arrived in their places of refuge or resettlement unsure and often alone, and have thrived as writers, musicians, social workers, advocates, and more. They are mothers, fathers, sisters, sons, friends—and neighbors.
In a tweet on Monday, President Trump confirmed that his White House is intent on forcing asylum seekers appearing at U.S. borders to be sent to Guatemala if they have transited Guatemala on route to the United States. The White House plan to secure Guatemala’s agreement to this arrangement is an astonishing distortion of U.S. law on asylum that could put thousands at grave risk.
The registration period for Venezuelan refugees in Trinidad and Tobago ends on Friday, June 14, but thousands remain unregistered. Refugees International is gravely concerned about the possibility that arrests and deportations may follow and urges the government of Trinidad and Tobago to extend the registration period.
Refugees International submits a statement for the record, denouncing the “Remain in Mexico“ policy and the crisis at the U.S. southwest border. Read our statement on legislative options that create pathways forward to address the crisis.
We, the undersigned organizations, members of the Working Group on Venezuelan Human Mobility, would like to express our concern over the recent decision adopted on June 6, 2019 by the Peruvian government, which requires Venezuelan citizens to present a humanitarian visa at the border to enter Peru. Said measure will enter into effect on midnight, June 15, 2019.
Refugees International President Eric Schwartz says agreement extending the “Remain in Mexico” policy “is wicked and immoral because it deliberately imposes grave risks upon highly vulnerable children, women, and men in violation of the most fundamental principles of decency.”
As Mozambique prepares to host an international pledging conference May 31-June 1 for reconstruction following cyclones Idai and Kenneth, Refugees International urges donor governments, UN agencies, and most importantly, the Mozambican government to prioritize support for cyclone-affected communities in three ways: boost funding for immediate lifesaving assistance, invest in work opportunities for displaced people, and prepare for a looming food crisis.
Although the president’s comments on refugees and asylum were short on details, they foreshadow a parade of horribles that will perpetuate his administration’s unmitigated hostility toward asylum seekers.