President Donald Trump says he’s planning to build ‘tent cities’ to house migrants in the caravan heading towards the U.S. border, where they can wait for their application for asylum to be processed.
Trump also told Fox News host Laura Ingraham on Monday night that the group from Central America are wasting their time and insisted they will not be let in when they arrive.
He said that if the migrants, who are still hundreds of miles away, do make it to the border and apply for asylum, as they’re legally entitled, the U.S. plans to ‘hold them until such time as their trial takes place.’
‘Where? We have the facilities?’ Ingraham asked.
‘We’re going to put up – we’re going to build tent cities,’ Trump replied. ‘We’re catching; we’re not releasing,’ he explained.
President Trump said that the administration is planning to ‘build tent cities’ for the thousands of migrants seeking asylum
Trump told Fox News Channel’s Laura Ingraham. ‘We’re going to put tents up all over the place, we’re not going to build structures – we’re going to have tents.’
Children and workers are seen at a tent encampment recently built near the Tornillo Port of Entry in June 2018 in Tornillo, Texas. Trump plans to build more tents as migrants come across
Trump has been stoking fears violent gang members may be part of the migrant ‘caravan’
‘We’re going to put tents up all over the place. We’re not going to build structures and spend all of these, you know, hundreds of millions of dollars – we’re going to have tents.’
‘They’re (the asylum seekers) going to be very nice… and they’re going to wait,’ he added. ‘And if they don’t get asylum, they get out.’
Under current protocol, migrants who clear an initial screening are often released into the country they are applying for asylum in until their cases are decided in immigration court, which can take several years.
Previous administrations have released the migrants pending their court dates but Trump suggested migrants would apply for asylum and then disappear into the country, never to be heard from again.
The administration’s plan to set up tent cities will be similar to those already erected in Tornillo, Texas which was built to house immigrant children separated from their parents after they were caught entering the U.S. under the administration’s zero tolerance policy.
The Trump administration will set up more tents similar to those in Tornillo, Texas which was set up to house immigrant children separated from their parents after they were caught entering the U.S. under the administration’s zero tolerance policy
Migrants, part of a caravan traveling to the U.S., rest after crossing the Suchiate river, a natural border between Guatemala and Mexico, in Ciudad Hidalgo
The president said the administration will ‘hold’ the migrants who apply for asylum rather than releasing them pending their court dates
‘The problem is – they release them in and then they have the trial three years later and nobody shows up,’ Trump explained.
‘But … unlike Obama and unlike others, we are going to take the people, we’re going to put them in and they’re going to wait.’
In recent days Trump has been stoking fears that violent gang members could be part of the so-called migrant ‘caravan.’ He has often referred to the group of migrants as an ‘invasion.’
The caravan includes thousands of Central Americans fleeing violence and dire economic conditions in their home countries.
Democrats and immigration-rights activists have accused the president of drawing on xenophobic and racist images in an effort to frighten the electorate ahead of next weeks midterm election.
‘If they applied for asylum, we’re going to hold them until such time as their trial takes place,’ Trump told Laura Ingraham. Pictured, migrants crossing the Guatemala-Mexico border
Central American migrants walk along the highway near of Ciudad Hidalgo after crossing to Mexico from Guatemala willing to reach the U.S.
The migrants are still weeks away from reaching the border.
During the interview Ingraham asked Trump to respond to former President Obama, who denounced the president’s rhetoric about the caravan during a recent campaign event.
‘Now the latest, they’re trying to convince everybody to be afraid of a bunch of impoverished, malnourished refugees a thousand miles away — that’s the thing, it’s the most important in this election?’ Obama said during an event in Florida this week. ‘We’re scare-mongering people on the border.’
Trump responded by saying that there are people from ‘gangs’ in the caravan, however his claim has not been proven.
Around 80 percent of asylum-seekers pass their first interview with a U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services Asylum officer but far fewer are granted asylum.
In 2017, about 20 percent of asylum requests were granted while 34 percent were denied.
A new group of Central American migrants bound for the U.S border wade in mass across the Suchiate River, that connects Guatemala and Mexico, in Tecun Uman, Guatemala
Migrants, part of a caravan traveling to the U.S., struggle to cross the river from Guatemala to Mexic and continue to walk in Mexico. They are still weeks away from reaching the border