The White House will ask Congress for greater power to conduct “fast-track” deportations of tens of thousands of parent-less children from Central America who are crossing the U.S. border.
The Guardian reports:
President Barack Obama has called the surge of minors pouring across Mexico border and into the Rio Grande Valley a “humanitarian crisis” and has ordered officials to open emergency shelters on military bases and increase the number of border agents.
But in a significant toughening of the president’s stance, to be announced formally on Monday, the administration will request the authority to immediately repatriate children from Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador – the Central American countries from which most of the child migrants are travelling
A White House official told the Guardian the administration is planning to ask Congress to provide the department of homeland security with “additional authority to exercise discretion” in dealing with children from those countries. The request has been drafted in a letter to Congress that will be sent on Monday, the official said.
More than 52,000 unaccompanied children have been apprehended on the border since October. Administration officials have been particularly alarmed by the increase in children, many of them girls, under the age of 13. Border officials have reported finding some children as young as four or five or travelling alone.
Read more here.
—Posted by Alexander Reed Kelly.
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