New surge in migrants crossing US-Canada border

A cab drops off a couple of asylum seekers at the US/Canada border near Champlain, New York cabs regularly drop off asylum seekers on the US side of the border

More than 5,700 asylum seekers crossed illegally from the US into Canada last month, a rise of almost 80 percent on July, government figures show.

Canada has seen a surge of refugee claimants in recent months, especially into the province of Quebec.

Crossings have increased relatively steadily since January.

There were 5,712 people intercepted by the Mounties last month at the Canada-US border, bringing this year’s total to 13,211.

In Manitoba, 80 people were intercepted after crossing the border. In British Columbia, 102 people were stopped.

But the vast majority – 5,530 – crossed into Quebec in the first part of the month, where people can easily cross a ditch at the end of a rural New York state road into Canada.

The influx into the predominantly French-speaking province was led by Haitians who had been living legally in the US, protected by a programme that extended temporary protection from deportation to Haitian citizens after the devastating 2010 earthquake.

The Trump administration has hinted it will not extend that protection when it expires in January 2018.

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Supreme Court Lifts Restrictions on Trump’s Travel Ban, Affecting 24,000 Immigrants (cuz no one’s ancestors ever came here as an immigrant, right?)

H13 travel ban

Back in the United States, the U.S. Supreme Court has temporarily lifted restrictions on President Trump’s travel ban—meaning about 24,000 refugees may now be barred from entering the United States. Last week, an appeals court in Seattle ruled that tens of thousands of refugees who had received promises of assistance from refugee resettlement organizations should be allowed to enter. But on Monday, the Supreme Court intervened to block this ruling. The Supreme Court is soon expected to issue a fuller ruling on the ban, which blocks refugees and all citizens of six majority-Muslim nations from entering the U.S.

“The Catholic Church backing a US immigration scheme because immigrants fill the pews!” – Steve Bannon

In an interview with CBS News’ 60 Minutes programme, Mr Bannon defended Mr Trump’s decision and said the Catholic Church had “been terrible” on the issue.

“They need illegal aliens to fill the churches,” he said in the interview, set to air on Sunday. “They have an economic interest in unlimited immigration.”  He was referring to the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (Daca), which President Donald Trump ended this week.

Mr Bannon added that he respected Cardinal Dolan and the Catholic Church, but that immigration was “not about doctrine” and rather “about the sovereignty of a nation”.

“In that regard, they’re just another guy with an opinion”, he said.

Media captionWhere do America’s undocumented immigrants live?

Cardinal Dolan shot back, saying it was not an issue of Catholic doctrine but a Biblical one.

“The Bible is so clear, so clear, that to treat the immigrant with dignity and respect, to make sure that society is just in its treatment of the immigrant is Biblical mandate.”

Houston Flood: Rex Tillerson thanks Mexico for aid offer, cuz Trump just.. eh.. couldn’t do it.

Residents wade with belongings in Houston

The US state of Texas has accepted an offer of flood aid from Mexico despite tension over President Donald Trump’s proposed border wall and his threats to scrap a free-trade deal.

On Sunday Mexico offered vehicles, boats, supplies and food, reports said.

Mexican Red Cross volunteers have also travelled to the flooded city of Houston.

President Trump has not yet commented but Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has thanked the Mexicans.

“It’s very generous of the government of Mexico to offer their help at this very, very challenging time for our citizens down in Texas and now moving towards the border of Louisiana as well,” Mr Tillerson said.

The ACLU: Immigration Agency Is Destroying Records of Human Rights Abuses

The American Civil Liberties Union is warning that the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency—ICE—is seeking permission to destroy 11 types of records, including information on sexual assaults by ICE officers, solitary confinement of prisoners and even the deaths of people in ICE custody. Immigrants’ rights activists say the request by ICE to the National Archives and Records Administration is aimed at covering up the agency’s track record of human rights abuses.

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Well, I guess your president has decided that YOU are gonna pay for the wall. Not Mexico.

H03x sanders

During Thursday’s White House press briefing—the first in three weeks—Huckabee Sanders was also asked about Trump’s threat to shut down the federal government if Congress doesn’t pay for an expanded wall on the U.S.-Mexico border.

Cecilia Vega: “Sarah, on this threat of the government shutdown if Congress doesn’t secure funding for this wall, how is that not a concession from this White House that Mexico isn’t actually going to pay for this wall and American taxpayers will?”

Sarah Huckabee Sanders: “Again, this is something the President is committed to. He’s committed to protecting American lives. And doing that through the border wall is something that’s important. It’s a priority, and we’re moving forward with it. Noah—”

Cecilia Vega: “But he’s not saying that Mexico is going to pay for it now.”

Sarah Huckabee Sanders: “He hasn’t said they’re not either.”

Comrade Trump pardons Sheriff Joe Arpaio, fellow racist.

S5 arpaio

The White House has announced President Trump has pardoned Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio who was recently convicted of contempt of court for defying a court order to stop his deputies from racial profiling.

Arpaio has been a major supporter of Donald Trump. Arpaio’s policies have included racial profiling and detaining immigrants in a scorching outdoor tent city jail, which Arpaio once referred to as his own “concentration camp.”

Immigrants rights and civil liberties groups have harshly criticized Trump’s decision:

Cecillia Wang, ACLU Deputy Legal Director: “With his pardon of Arpaio, Trump has chosen lawlessness over justice, division over unity, hurt over healing. Once again, the president has acted in support of illegal, failed immigration enforcement practices that target people of color and have been struck down by the courts. His pardon of Arpaio is a presidential endorsement of racism.”

Carlos Garcia, director of Puente: “In pardoning Arpaio, Trump has lost all legitimacy. After Charlottesville, Trump came to Phoenix to solidify himself as a white supremacist candidate. Convicted Sheriff Arpaio should be tried for much more than contempt of court. His Sheriffs killed Marty Atencio in his jail, kept humans in an outdoor tent city he called his own concentration camp, and he said he was proud to be called KKK.”