The Weekly Round-Up
The Weekly Round-Up
Welcome to The Briefing newsletter by Jason Clarke and Will Maddox. This week, we learn about the decrease in resettlement of Christian refugees, uncertainty for families at the border, what international law says about refugees and past U.S. leaders thought of refugees fleeing conflict. The Briefing is a collaboration between Seek the Peace and We Welcome Refugees.
Even though President Trump promised to protect Christian refugees, the number that has been admitted to the country is down 50 percent since he was sworn in. The administration capped the number of refugees at 45,000 for the fiscal year, but with only three months remaining the US has only reached 36 percent of that goal.
Despite the Trump Administration’s claim that it met a court-ordered deadline to reunite all the children separated from their parents at the border, around 700 children are still without their families. The administration said that nearly 1,800 children have been reunited with their families and the remaining children remained without their families due to outside circumstances. Many of the parents who were separated were deported back to their native country without their children because of the zero tolerance policy.
The 1951 U.N. Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees says that migrants who traverse an international border seeking asylum should not face discrimination, be penalized or be sent back to be where they could be in danger. Born out of the aftermath of World War II and originally applied to refugees then, the law is being flouted by countries from all over the world including Bangladesh, Italy and the U.S.
This week marked the 39th anniversary of Vice President Walter Mondale’s speech at a special Geneva Meeting on Refugees and Displaced Persons in Southeast Asia, when many Asian countries were refusing to accept Vietnamese boat people who were fleeing their country after the Vietnam War. Mondale pleaded with world leaders to act in order to protect these displaced peoples, offering an alternative vision of what the U.S. policy used to be toward refugees.