Alejandro Mayorkas, Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security promised that the United States will reject Cuban and Haitian refugees attempting to enter the country even if they can demonstrate a credible fear of persecution from their home nations.
Mayorkas issued a statement warning seafaring refugees that they cannot “come to the United States.”
The warning was issued following a crackdown by the Cuban government against demonstrators who protested the untenable living conditions they suffer under over the weekend. So far, at least 100 individuals have been reported as missing or arrested in Cuba, while Haiti simultaneously suffers unrest and turmoil following the assassination of President Jovenel Moise last week.
Mayorkas is a refugee from Cuba himself, having fled with his family to the United States in 1960 following Fidel Castro’s communist overthrow of the country, a story which he spoke about after being nominated as head of the DHS by President Biden.
But Tuesday, Mayorkas declared that anyone attempting to enter the U.S. from Cuba as he did will be detained the Coast Guard and sent home.
Mayorkas said that individuals who can prove that they face “a well-founded fear of… torture” or “persecution” can try their luck with other countries for “resettlement.” “They will not enter,” he warned.
Mayorkas’ edict doesn’t mark a change in U.S. policy. The U.S. government has been sending back migrants found at sea for decades. Usually, officials send migrants who are determined as being eligible for screening to Guantanamo Bay, where they have an interview with an asylum officer. Those who are found to be in legitimate need of asylum are sent to “third countries,” such as Australia.
Mayorkas added in his comments that there has not been a “surge” in maritime migrant activity from Cuban or Haiti in the same way that the U.S.-Mexico border has been facing a crisis throughout the year. The numbers are relatively low, with 2020 seeing only 49 Cuban migrants and 430 Haitian migrants encountered by the Coast Guard.
At the Mexico border, however, the numbers are notably greater, with the month of May brining 2,600 Cubans and 2,800 Haitian migrants.
Amnesty International, among other groups and individuals, blasted the stance of the Biden administration, which has allowed warrantless entry of migrants through Mexico since the beginning of Biden’s term but is unwilling to allow refugees with a legitimate plight as they attempt to escape torture and persecution by a brutal communist regime.
Amnesty International: “This shameful message from the U.S. government to offshore its responsibilities for refugee protection is a horrible turning away from the administration's promised commitment to human rights and racial justice.” https://t.co/5YzCOfuWqD
— Hamed Aleaziz (@Haleaziz) July 14, 2021
This is outrageous. The Biden Administration fails to control the border and allow for catch and release yet the Cubans and Haitians who are suffering from political persecution are not allowed to seek asylum in the United States if they come by boat. Makes no sense. https://t.co/c3HkNsRGtT
— Mercedes Schlapp (@mercedesschlapp) July 14, 2021
Didn't even cause a blip today. Didn't trend. No activist hashtag. No outrage from Ocasio-Cortez. No poetic grandstanding from Jim Acosta or CNN about the Statue of Liberty.
Nothing. Silence. https://t.co/AjmjhGqSDc
— Stephen L. Miller (@redsteeze) July 14, 2021
Cubans are being slaughtered by communists and the Biden administration won't let them come to the U.S. because they know that the majority of Cubans vote for Republicans. https://t.co/KV5tSCsaE7
— Ryan Saavedra (@RealSaavedra) July 14, 2021
I guess this is because Cubans aren't being persecuted by climate change, only by communists. https://t.co/quEa9kctNp
— David Harsanyi (@davidharsanyi) July 14, 2021
The Biden administration puts its foot down when they don’t feel immigration will benefit them politically. Pay attention. https://t.co/TNENrXgDTU
— Bonchie (@bonchieredstate) July 13, 2021
Embarrassing. They have legitimate cause for asylum. Shameful move by the Biden administration. Not surprised. https://t.co/ltWEH5fJ3b
— Gabriella Hoffman (@Gabby_Hoffman) July 13, 2021
Author: Janice Robinson