New Trump Plan Would Force Asylum Seekers to Stay in Mexico: Report

Many Central Americans planning to seek asylum at U.S. border crossings would be forced to turn around and wait in Mexico under a new plan the Trump administration is preparing to implement, The Washington Post reports. According to Department of Homeland Security memos cited by the Post, Central American asylum seekers will now have to prove they face dangers in Mexico, not just their home countries. “If you are not determined to have a reasonable fear of remaining in Mexico, you will remain in Mexico,” one of the DHS memos reportedly instructs asylum officers to tell asylum seekers. The plan, called “Remain in Mexico,” breaks with current policies that allow asylum seekers who can establish a reasonable fear of returning home to stay in the U.S. until they can get a hearing with an immigration judge. The new measures would affect the thousands of Central Americans in a caravan traveling across Mexico toward the U.S., many of whom have said they intend to apply for asylum to escape gang violence and other dangers back home. News of the “Remain in Mexico” plan comes just days after a federal judge temporarily blocked the Trump administration from enforcing a ban on asylum seekers at the border. Senior White House adviser Stephen Miller is said to be pushing to have the new policy enforced immediately, while other senior officials have reportedly expressed concerns about how it would affect negotiations with the Mexican government.