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Watchdog Sues Trump Administration Over Arbitrary Detentions of Asylum Seekers

© Flickr / BBC World Service/Valeria PerassoUS border
US border - Sputnik International
NEW YORK (Sputnik) - A coalition of US rights groups filed a lawsuit against President Donald Trump's administration over arbitrary detention of asylum seekers fleeing death and prosecution in their countries of origin, court documents revealed.

"The Trump administration wants to make life so miserable for asylum seekers that they give up and return to their home countries, even at the risk of torture or death," American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) Immigrants’ Rights Project lawyer Michael Tan said in a press release on Thursday. "The administration is wielding indefinite detention as a weapon to deter future asylum seekers, which is both cruel and unconstitutional."

The release said that the ACLU was joined by the Center for Gender and Refugee Studies, Human Rights First, and Covington & Burling LLP in filing the legal motion.

Haitian migrants seeking asylum in the United States, queue at El Chaparral border crossing in the hope of getting an appointment with US migration authorities, in the Mexican border city of Tijuana, in Baja California, on October 7, 2016 - Sputnik International
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The rights groups said that all asylum seekers have passed credible fear screenings, meaning that the US government has determined that they have credible fear of prosecution in their country of origin, according to the court documents.

However, instead of providing them with humanitarian parole, as stipulated in the US Constitution, the Trump administration is indefinitely jailing them, the plaintiffs claim.

The case cites the leading plaintiff Ansly Damus, an ethics teacher from Haiti, who has twice passed the credible fear screening and yet is being jailed for over a year at this point.

The Trump administration has put Damus behind bars for indefinite period of time after he has been granted asylum, according to the lawsuit. Other plaintiffs face similar conditions.

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