US Judge Orders List Of Children Separated From Migrant Parents

Unaccompanied minors are seen at a facility in Bristow Virginia on June 21. 

Handout. Reuters Unaccompanied minors are seen at a facility in Bristow Virginia on June 21

Trump has made fighting immigration - both illegal and legal - a central plank of his US-centered policy agenda, resulting in the "zero tolerance" immigration approach under which undocumented border crossers were being systematically prosecuted, and their children separated from them. Azar said fewer than 3,000 children were separated, and fewer than 100 are under the age of five.

The new policy faced backlash from immigrant advocates and lawmakers from the Democratic and Republican parties, and on June 20, President Donald Trump signed an executive order ending the practice of separating families.

Mr Azar said that in order to comply with the deadline, normal vetting processes may need to be abandoned.

The government suggests the class be contained to border crossers who were separated from their children on or after March 9, the date the ACLU filed class claims in the lawsuit.

The Department of Health and Human Services, which is responsible for both children taken from their parents and those who came to the US with an adult, is now trying to match families.

But without a response to questions about how many reunions have occurred - or at least an updated figure on the number of kids from separated families who remain in custody - the public has no way to track whether families are being reunited or how quickly it's occurring.

ACF/HHS/Handout via REUTERS Occupants at Casa Padre, an immigrant shelter for unaccompanied minors in Brownsville, Texas, are seen in this photo provided by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

Updates with statement of HHS Secretary Azar from Thursday.

Officials say they have deployed hundreds of government employees and opened a command center usually reserved for natural disasters to match parents and children.

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Immigrant children under 5 will be returned to their families.

In a June 26 ruling, US District Judge Dana M. Sabraw in San Diego ordered federal officials to reunite families within 30 days.

But it's still not clear yet how that will work. As of Thursday, the review found 101 children under 5 who have been separated, according to White. But he signaled they'd ask a judge for more time. ICE has moved 23 parents on commercial flights to be closer to such children in anticipation of reuniting them, according to Guadian.

A court hearing was scheduled Friday.

The officials said the records weren't deleted deliberately to hide the family ties, but because the customs agents thought it was more logical to track cases separately rather than as a family unit.

Neither HHS nor the Department of Homeland Security responded to requests for information on the testing.

The facilities would have to comply with the standards set by the agreement that governs how children are treated in custody, which include access to medical care, entertainment, counseling and air conditioning; though many who have been detained say the accommodations still feel like prison. "HHS anticipates, however, in some instances it will not be able to complete the additional processes within the timelines the Court prescribed, particularly with regard to class members who are already not in Government custody, (e.g., because they have previously been paroled or released)".

The administration says the Congolese woman had no documents and was unable to prove she was the girl's mother when she claimed asylum.

The agency said it has expedited its existing process for reunification.

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