Trump rails against court defeat on asylum
Washington, April 10 (IANS) US President Donald Trump has lashed out at a judge for blocking his policy of sending asylum seekers to Mexico to await court hearings in their cases. “A 9th Circuit judge just ruled that Mexico is too dangerous for migrants,” he tweeted. “So unfair to the US.”
His policy would have returned migrants back over the border while they sought a legal right to stay in the US, the BBC reported.
The legal defeat comes as migrant numbers at the US-Mexico border surged to their highest since 2008.
Trump was said to be livid after US immigration officials estimated border apprehensions in March had topped 100,000.
The San Francisco ninth district judge’s order on Monday against the migrant policy is not due to go into effect until this Friday, giving US officials a chance to appeal.
Meanwhile, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), which implements Trump’s immigration directives, is in turmoil following a major shake-up.
DHS Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen quit on Sunday after being summoned to the White House by the president. Republican Senator Chuck Grassley called on Trump on Monday to halt the leadership purge at the agency.
The senior senator told the Washington Post he was “very, very concerned” about reports of possible further DHS dismissals.
“The president has to have some stability and particularly with the number one issue that he’s made for his campaign,” Mr Grassley said.
“He’s pulling the rug out from the very people that are trying to help him accomplish his goal.”
Last week Mr Trump rescinded his own nomination of Ronald Vitiello as director of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).
Speaking to Fox News on Monday, White House spokesman Hogan Gidley said: “It’s time to do things a little differently. “The president’s looking around to reshape his team so he can have the people in place to carry out his agenda.”
There are also reports that the president is preparing to toughen his stance on immigration. According to the New York Times, Trump is considering implementing further limits on asylum seekers, ending birthright citizenship, and closing ports of entry at the Mexican border.
But Trump denied on Tuesday reports that his administration was planning once again to separate families caught crossing the border.