Judge orders US to stop expelling children who cross border

Judge orders US to stop expelling children who cross border


HOUSTON (AP) – A federal judge on Wednesday ordered the Trump administration to stop expelling immigrant children who cross the southern border alone, halting a policy that has resulted in thousands of rapid deportations of minors during the coronavirus pandemic.

U.S. District Judge Emmet Sullivan issued a preliminary injunction sought by legal groups suing on behalf of children whom the government sought to expel before they could request asylum or other protections under federal law.

The Trump administration has expelled at least 8,800 unaccompanied children since March, when it issued an emergency declaration citing the coronavirus as grounds for barring most people crossing the border from remaining in the United States.

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Border agents have forced many people to return to Mexico right away, while detaining others in holding facilities or hotels, sometimes for days or weeks. Meanwhile, government-funded facilities meant to hold children while they are placed with sponsors have thousands of unused beds.

Sullivan’s order bars only the

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