In another reversal, Biden increases limit on number of refugees admitted to the United States

Oxfam America, a nonprofit, said in a statement: “We are relieved that the Biden administration has, after a long and unnecessary delay, kept its promise to raise the refugee admission limit for this year to 62,500 ”.

The back-and-forth around the refugee program is the latest turning point in the president’s struggle to deal with the immigration system.

On his first day in office, Mr. Biden proposed a complete overhaul of national immigration laws and issued a number of executive orders aimed at rolling back Mr. Trump’s policies. But after about 100 days, immigration legislation still hasn’t moved forward in Congress. And for weeks, Mr Biden delayed increasing refugee admissions, despite a call from his own Secretary of State, Antony J. Blinken, to keep his pledge.

The administration also had to defend its response to a wave of migrants on the border with Mexico, even as Biden continued to rely on a Trump-era health rule to quickly prevent many migrants from d ‘enter the United States without providing them. a chance to seek asylum. The administration said the rule was necessary to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

Republican critics of the president have taken on the issue as a political weapon, accusing Mr. Biden of making bad political choices that have opened the floodgates to illegal immigration during a pandemic.

However, the administration has made progress in the safe treatment of migrant children and adolescents outside border detention centers and in temporary shelters. As more than 5,000 minors were stranded in facilities run by the border patrol in March, on Monday, the administration registered around 600 minors in prison-like facilities.

White House officials have urged migrants not to come to the United States now, but have promised Mr. Biden will work to increase legal opportunities to live, work and visit the United States. Eleanor Acer, director of refugee protection at Human Rights First, said the president must continue to do so.

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