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U.S. Supreme Court Rules in Favor of Trump Administration Asylum Ban

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The U.S. Supreme Court decided late Wednesday to allow the Trump administration to ban asylum claims at the U.S. border with Mexico for those individuals who cannot show that they have applied for asylum in the countries they pass through on the way to the United States. The Court’s decision stays a lower court injunction, allowing the government to implement the new rule until the case is decided as a legal fight continues.

Michelle Brané, senior director of the Women's Refugee Commission's Migrant Rights and Justice program, issued the following statement in response to the decision:

“We are heartbroken by the decision by the U.S. Supreme Court that will deny protections to families at the southern border fleeing persecution. If the ruling is upheld, it will be the end of asylum at the southern border of the U.S. Because of this decision, thousands of women, children, and families – seeking safety and fleeing violence and persecution – will be returned either to the danger they fled or into the hands of cartels and traffickers at the Mexican border.

“This decision affects not only Central Americans but anyone except Mexicans fleeing violence in their home countries, including those fleeing religious persecution, political dictatorships, ethnic cleansing, and war, ranging from Venezuelans and Congolese, to Cubans and Nicaraguans. This is a fundamental betrayal of the promise of America as a beacon of hope and our rule of law. It does not make us any safer, and it violates our legal obligations, under both international and domestic laws.

“It is a devastating setback for human rights – but we are confident that justice will prevail in the end. In the meantime, thousands of migrants and asylum seekers will be subjected to danger and deprivation of due process. It will not only drive desperate, vulnerable people into the hands of waiting smugglers and traffickers ready to exploit them, but more lives will be lost.”