Cavan-Monaghan TD Brendan Smith ha condemned the he policy of the US administration of separating immigrant children from their parents at the US-Mexico border.
The local Fianna Fáil TD and Chairman of the Joint Committee on Foreign Affairs, as a result is set to request the Joint Committee to formally support his position this coming Thursday, June 21.
Commenting, Deputy Smith said the policy now being implemented by the US Administration of separating immigrant children from their parents at the US-Mexico border is something that “needs to stop” with immediate effect. “The images of frightened children, separated from their parents and being held in cages has shocked the world and is reminiscent to some of the darkest days in history. As a civilised society we cannot allow this practice to continue and we must express our utter condemnation,” he decried.
A Honduran asylum seeker, 2, and her mother are taken into custody near the US-Mexico border. The Trump administration’s “zero tolerance” policy for undocumented immigrants calls for the separation of parents and children. #gettyimages #undocumented #gettyimagesnews pic.twitter.com/2tCmxDYlvd— John Moore (@jbmoorephoto) June 13, 2018
There presently no law demanding the separation of children from parents at the US-Mexico border, but rather a policy introduced under the Trump administration's Zero-Tolerance Policy. This includes expediting the process to determine eligibility to remain, promptly removing those who are denied, and criminally prosecuting migrants for first-time border offences. These were all previously treated as civil violations under previous US Administrations.
The policy has led to 1,995 children being separated from families at the border between 19 April and 31 May, in addition to a further 700 children since October 2017.
BREAKING: Border Patrol @CBP just gave us this video of the detention facility we toured yesterday in McAllen, Texas. We weren't allowed to bring in cameras, or interview anyone. To be clear: this is government handout video. pic.twitter.com/Zjy80qIZFZ— David Begnaud (@DavidBegnaud) June 18, 2018
As the children of prosecuted migrants are not charged with any crime, they are not permitted to be jailed with their parents and are instead placed in detention centres.
There is growing outcry internationally at how the Trump Administration is being applied.
President Trump has meanwhile lashed out on Twitter blaming the Democrats for the policy. In May, he urged putting “pressure on the Democrats to end the horrible law that separates children (from) their parents once they cross the Border in the US”.
It is the Democrats fault for being weak and ineffective with Boarder Security and Crime. Tell them to start thinking about the people devastated by Crime coming from illegal immigration. Change the laws!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 18, 2018
In a statement, Deputy Smith outlined his plans to plead with the Joint Committee on Foreign Affairs, Trade and Defence to support him in condemning the current adopted practice, and formally convey to the US Ambassador to Ireland the “very deep concerns” shared whilst demanding an immediate cessation to the controversial practice.