Home » Border Chaos: Agents Told to Release Migrants Despite Biden’s Asylum Ban

Border Chaos: Agents Told to Release Migrants Despite Biden’s Asylum Ban

by Richard A Reagan

In a contradiction to President Joe Biden’s recent executive order on asylum-seekers, U.S. Border Patrol agents in Southern California have been instructed to release migrants from most Eastern Hemisphere countries into the United States, rather than initiating removal proceedings.

According to a leaked government document given to federal law enforcement in San Diego, the directive came in the wake of President Joe Biden’s order intended to prevent migrants from seeking asylum upon reaching the U.S.

The document specifies that only migrants from six countries—Georgia, Moldova, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan—will be denied entry and referred for expedited removal by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

In contrast, all other migrants from the Eastern Hemisphere, which includes over 100 countries, are to be released with court appearance documents.

This decision represents a significant departure from statements made by senior administration officials, who, just days earlier, had affirmed a strict policy towards “extra-hemispheric migrants” — those traveling through multiple countries without seeking asylum.

“Extra-hemispheric migrants have always been a challenge. They will be subject to these rules, provisions,” a senior administration official said. “We’ve also been working with governments all over the world to enhance our ability to repatriate individuals to countries that have historically been challenging. We have, for example, operated repatriation flights to India, to China, to Uzbekistan, to Mauritania, to Senegal over the last few months, and those are all countries that historically would have been much more challenging for us to return individuals to and we anticipate we will continue to enhance our ability to return migrants to the Eastern Hemisphere.”

“So, we do think that the rules measures will allow us to impose an immediate and fast consequence to migrants no matter what country they’re coming from,” the same official said.

The San Diego area, a crucial juncture for migrants arriving from Asia, Europe, and Africa, often faces challenges in repatriating such individuals due to logistical and diplomatic barriers. The region’s unique demographic makeup complicates enforcement, contrasting sharply with areas like South Texas where migrants primarily originate from Central America and Mexico and are more easily removable.

A U.S. Customs and Border Protection official, speaking on condition of anonymity, indicated that the San Diego sector would continue to place migrants of all nationalities into expedited removal proceedings despite the new instructions.

The official also noted the administration’s struggles with inadequate funding, which hampers broader enforcement of the president’s order.

Further complicating matters, the document reveals differing policies for Western Hemisphere migrants.

Adults from countries other than Cuba, El Salvador, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Venezuela are quickly returned to their origins, bypassing the lengthy legal process typical of immigration proceedings.

The selective application of the new asylum rules has raised questions about the effectiveness and fairness of U.S. immigration policy, especially at a time when the administration claims to be ramping up efforts to manage the border crisis responsibly.

As agents on the ground face the daily realities of these policies, the gap between directive and practice continues to widen, fostering a climate of uncertainty and criticism from various stakeholders, including those who see the administration’s approach as too lenient on illegal immigration.

The White House has not yet responded to requests from the Washington Examiner for comment on these developments. 

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