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When Pricila, a 32-year-old trans woman, fled El Salvador in February 2019, she had good reason to fear for her life. Police had beaten and sexually assaulted her, telling her they would make her a man. Gang members attempted to forcibly recruit her.…
A group of men and women march walk while holding rainbow pride flags
Report
Summary Camila Díaz Córdova, a 29-year-old transgender woman, tried for years to escape the violence that had characterized her life in El Salvador. She made her way to the United States in 2017 to seek asylum, but after four months in immigration…
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The Trump administration has proposed a new federal regulation that would create insurmountable barriers to the vast majority of asylum claims, including by gutting the definition of refugee to the point where lesbian, gay, bisexual and…
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Proposed Secure and Protect Act Attempts to Block Asylum Claims

If you follow the twisted logic of Senator Lindsey Graham’s Secure and Protect Act to its ultimate conclusion, the US would all but shut its doors to Central American refugees – full stop. A vote on the bill in the US Senate Committee…
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The people in the Central American caravan making their way to the US border with Mexico are facing real life-and-death issues that need to be addressed. What they don’t need is to be overshadowed by posturing and threats, particularly from the…
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Gangs Threaten Children, Parents

Maria* and Carlos* never wanted to leave Honduras with their three children, they told me. But then gangs began threatening Carlos and their 13-year-old son Eddy*. The family moved houses, but one evening masked men came to their little…
A Honduran mother and her 3-year-old daughter wait with fellow asylum seekers on the Mexican side of the Brownsville-Matamoros International Bridge after being denied entry by U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers near Brownsville, Texas, U.S., June
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Waves of Arbitrary Expulsions

  (Beirut) – Algerian authorities have arbitrarily deported in the beginning of March more than a hundred migrants of various African nationalities into a lawless zone of neighboring Mali, where armed groups have robbed some of them,…
Men deported from Algeria queuing after their arrival to Bamako, October 25, 2017. © 2017 Bukary Dao/Le Republican
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Investigate Abuses, Protect Vulnerable Civilians

(Nairobi) – Armed groups have carried out a wave of killings in central Mali since January 2017. The killings, by Islamist armed groups, self-defense militias, and, to a lesser extent, government soldiers…
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Curbing Security Force Abuses, Ensuring Justice Crucial in Ethiopia, Mali

(Berlin) – German Chancellor Angela Merkel should stress the urgent need for key rights reforms during her visits to Mali, Niger, and Ethiopia. Between October 9 and 11, 2016, Chancellor Merkel will meet officials in each country to discuss…
German Chancellor Angela Merkel speaks with Ghana's President John Dramani Mahama during the Valletta Summit on Migration on November 11, 2015.
News

Major Obstacles for Central American Asylum Seekers

  Mexico City – Central American children fleeing serious threats face formidable obstacles in applying for asylum in Mexico, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. The 151-page report, “Closed Doors: Mexico’s Failure…
A 12-year-old Salvadoran boy rests as he waits to be deported, at the National Immigration Institute, in Comitan, Chiapas, Mexico on August 19, 2010. ©2010 Jose Cabezas/AFP/Getty Images
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Central American children fleeing serious threats face formidable obstacles in applying for asylum in Mexico. There are wide discrepancies between Mexican law and practise. By law, Mexico offers protection to those who face risks to their lives or safety…
News
RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST: We have arrived at a peak season for migration to the United States. It's springtime, and both the weather and the economy make it advantageous for many people to cross the border from Mexico. That means we should know soon if the U.…
Report
“You Don’t Have Rights Here” US Border Screening and Returns of Central Americans to Risk of Serious Harm Summary Methodology…
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Serious Flaws in Border Screening of Fleeing Central Americans

(San Pedro Sula) – The US government’s rapid-fire screening of unauthorized migrants at the border is sending Central Americans back to the risk of serious harm, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today.  The 44-page report, “‘You Don…
News
To the Editor: “Obama Approves Plan to Let Children Apply for Refugee Status in Central America” (news article, Oct. 1) reports that human rights advocates have praised the idea of in-country refugee processing. Count us out. The Obama administration’s in…
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The humanitarian crisis of undocumented Central American children may have faded from the headlines, but the problem has not gone away—not least because Congress failed to pass a bill addressing the issue before it left for the August recess. Both…