The American Civil Liberties Union has filed a lawsuit against the Trump administration over a new rule that would virtually end asylum protections for Central American migrants.
The new rule, announced Monday and expected to go into effect Tuesday, would make any migrants who pass through another country on their journey to the U.S. ineligible for asylum, with only a few exceptions.
“This is the Trump administration’s most extreme run at an asylum ban yet. It clearly violates domestic and international law, and cannot stand,” ACLU attorney Lee Gelernt said in a statement.
The lawsuit was filed in U.S. District Court in San Francisco.
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Individuals from the Center for Constitutional Rights and the Southern Poverty Law Center’s Immigrant Justice Project also spoke out against the effort, highlighting the danger it poses to migrants fleeing already dire conditions.
U.S. law allows migrants to request asylum regardless of how they came to the country, except for those who’ve come through a country that is considered safe. Currently, Canada is the only country that the U.S. legally recognizes as a “safe third country.”
Despite earlier reports that Guatemala would sign a “safe third country” agreement, which would have allowed the U.S. government to send those seeking asylum in the United States to Guatemala instead, the country said it would not do so on Sunday.
The ACLU’s lawsuit comes amid the Trump administration’s continued efforts to stop migrants from crossing the U.S.-Mexico border, which have resulted in a number of court challenges.
It remains to be seen whether the courts will uphold Trump’s new policy.
Read the lawsuit below.
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This is a developing story. Please check back for updates.