US refugee admission signals drop as Trump pulls out of UN migration initiative
Refugee admissions to the United States were down 83 percent in the first two months of the fiscal year for 2018 - October and November - compared to the first two months of of the previous fiscal year 2017.
Published: December 5, 2017, 9:43 am
Only 3 108 refugees were admitted in October and November down from the 18 300 admitted in October and November of last year.
It has been fourteen months since the former Obama administration backed the UN move for “global responsibility” in accepting refugees and migrants. While Obama championed the declaration, Trump is steering the United States away from inviting migrants from Muslim countries to the US.
President Trump has proposed a refugee admission ceiling of 45 000 for FY 2018, the lowest ceiling set by an administration since the Refugee Act was passed in 1980. His administration is also withdrawing from a UN initiative called the Global Compact on Migration.
This week, the Trump Administration pulled out of the UN migrant intitiative, with US Ambassador to the U.N. Nikki Haley stating that it was “simply not compatible with US sovereignty”.
Her announcement comes amid a sharp drop in the number of refugees admitted to the United States during the first two months of fiscal year 2018. The most striking change in the refugee admissions is reflected in the numbers from Syria, Somalia and Iraq.
In 2016, some 2 259 Syrians (97.6 percent Muslim, 1.7 percent Christian), 2 463 Somalis (99.9 percent Muslim) and 2 262 Iraqis (75 percent Muslim, 17.3 percent Christian, 7.4 percent Yazidi) were resettled.
This year, the numbers had dropped to 33 Syrians (66.6 percent Muslim, 33.3 percent Christian), 126 Somalis (100 percent Muslim) and 76 Iraqis (84.2 percent Muslim, 10.5 percent Christian, 3.9 percent Yazidi).
Among the 3 108 refugees admitted to the US this year, the five top countries were Bhutan (805), the Democratic Republic of Congo (627), Burma (347), Ukraine (290) and Eritrea (281).
Most – some 59.6 percent – were Christian, and the rest were 15.4 percent Muslim, 9.6 percent Buddhist, 7.6 percent Hindu, 4.7 percent Kirat.
In contrast, the Obama administration allowed asylum seekers from the DRC (4 236), Somalia (2 463), Iraq (2 262), Syria (2 259) and Burma (1 509). Of the 18 300 refugees, less than half were Christian.
The numbers reflect the differences in the two administrations’ approach on refugees, with the the Obama administration admitting 84 994 refugees during the last full fiscal year.
In a statement on Sunday, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said the US “simply cannot in good faith support a process that could undermine the sovereign right of the United States to enforce our immigration laws and secure our borders”.
“The United States supports international cooperation on migration issues, but it is the primary responsibility of sovereign states to help ensure that migration is safe, orderly, and legal.”
In September last year, a summit at the UN had adopted a consensus declaration – the New York Declaration for Refugees and Migrants – to work by 2018 towards consensus on a global compact on “sharing the refugee burden”.
Haley has dismissed the New York declaration, because it “contains numerous provisions that are inconsistent with US immigration and refugee policies and the Trump administration’s immigration principles”.
She said no country has done more that the US in providing support for migrant and refugee populations globally, “and our generosity will continue, but our decisions on immigration policies must always be made by Americans and Americans alone,” she said.
“We will decide how best to control our borders and who will be allowed to enter our country.”
The US withdrawal from the initiative was announced on Monday at a three-day global summit in Mexico in support of worldwide migration. The president reportedly decided on Friday that the United States would not attend the conference in Puerto Vallarta, after top national security advisers advised against participation.
World leaders expressed their open disapproval and dismay at the Trump announcement, which is likely to shine more light on global efforts to ignore a growing crisis.
Last April, the president issued an executive order cracking down on H-1B visas, or work permits for immigrants.
Trump has also supported a bill seeking to cut annual immigration numbers in half — bringing numbers down from around a million to 500 000, and in September, the White House announced an end to the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program with a six-month delay.
The US president has repeatedly called refugees “terrorists” and has blamed them for incidents of violence domestically and abroad.
The numbers of refugees are rising worldwide, with the global refugee population growing by more than 50 percent since 2013. Wars and conflict across the Middle East, Afghanistan, and parts of Africa and southern Asia have created the highest number of displaced persons since World War II.
All rights reserved. You have permission to quote freely from the articles provided that the source (www.freewestmedia.com) is given. Photos may not be used without our consent.
Keep your language polite. Readers from many different countries visit and contribute to Free West Media and we must therefore obey the rules in, for example, Germany. Illegal content will be deleted.
If you have been approved to post comments without preview from FWM, you are responsible for violations of any law. This means that FWM may be forced to cooperate with authorities in a possible crime investigation.
If your comments are subject to preview by FWM, please be patient. We continually review comments but depending on the time of day it can take up to several hours before your comment is reviewed.
We reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive, contain slander or foul language, or are irrelevant to the discussion.
WashingtonUS senators from both main parties are preparing additional sanctions against Russia, despite the Senate Intelligence Committee having uncovered no direct evidence of collusion between the President Trump's campaign and Russia.
WashingtonThe alleged Russian influence campaign - or meddling - in US elections never happened but was used to smear Russia and undermine the election of President Donald Trump.
RomeItalian Deputy Foreign Minister on Monday joined indignation expressed by Russia and China over efforts to meddle in crisis-hit Venezuela after the EU Parliament also voted, in a non-legislative resolution, to recognise opposition leader Juan Guaido as interim president of the oil-rich nation.
WashingtonAmerican mainstream media reported this week that a group of white school children harassed a group of Native American, black and minority adults when footage of the interaction shows that the exact opposite happened.
BrasiliaNew Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro announced the withdrawal from the UN Global Compact on Migration as he had promised to do earlier.
WashingtonThe US government shutdown has continued for 18 days. Now defense contractors and lobbyists are starting to worry that it could be bad for Israel.
WashingtonThe United States' national defense hierarchy is, for the first time in history, largely run by women. According to mainstream MSNBC, women have taken over the US military-industrial complex.
Facebook monitors billions of posts per day in over 100 languages. The company’s solution is a network of ideologically-minded workers that ban content with the help of PowerPoint slides. That sadly does not include child porn on third-party apps.
New YorkColumbia University student Julian von Abele, whose comments on Twitter about white people went viral earlier this week, released a statement on Tuesday defending himself.
SantiagoChile has joined the growing exodus from the United Nations Migration Compact. It has become the latest country to withdraw, President's Sebastian Pinera's administration announced.