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‘Almost Certain Women Will Be Killed’ After U.S. Move to Deny Asylum to Victims of Gang or Domestic Violence

12:30 PM PDT on June 13, 2018

[dropcap size=big]A[/dropcap]ny migrant seeking asylum at the U.S.-Mexico border by claiming domestic abuse or gang violence will now be turned away, the latest move by the Trump administration meant to attack illegal immigration.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced the decision on Monday.

The loss of asylum status for such cases could keep tens of thousands of people, especially women, from seeking safety in the United States. The change is likely to impact asylum seekers from Mexico, where the drug war in happening, or Honduras, Guatemala, and El Salvador, where gangs are strong.

The latest move to make asylum tougher was met with anger and worry by reform advocates and Democratic leaders.

“It puts survivors of extreme domestic violence in great danger, because it allows them to be returned to countries where their governments do not protect them against this abuse,” Denise Gilman, director of the immigration clinic at the University of Texas Law School in Austin said in reports. “It is almost certain that women will be killed as a result of this decision that will return them to their abusers.”

Sessions accused U.S. immigration attorneys of “exploiting” the asylum laws and taking advantage of the country's “generosity.”

Overall, the Trump administration is getting stricter on immigration issues. The government is still arguing in court over its desire to ban immigration from some countries with Muslim populations. Agents are now separating families seeking asylum that cross into the U.S. border illegally, pulling children away from mothers. A more detailed explanation of the separations happening by Vox is here.

The attorney general said in a speech to immigration judges Monday that migrants were claiming credible fear without having a real case. He argued that the decision would alleviate pressure and “provide more clarity” for immigration courts.

California Congresswoman and House minority leader Nancy Pelosi released a statement, saying “the Trump Administration’s inhumanity and heartlessness know no bounds.”

Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) issued a statement denouncing the decision. “[Monday’s] decision will send untold numbers of refugees to their deaths. Attorney General Sessions: their blood is on your hands,” he said.

RELATED: California to Battle Trump Over Citizenship Census Question

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