US Detention Of Asylum Seekers Increased Nearly Threefold Under Obama

Barack Obama pauses as he speaks during a news conference at the G-7 summit

WASHINGTON — The number of persons seeking asylum imprisoned in the United States increased by close to a factor of three during the Obama administration, a US human rights group said in a report.

“The number of asylum seekers sent to and held in immigration detention has increased nearly threefold from 2010 to 2014,” the report, released on Monday by Human Rights First, stated.

The report noted that in 2010, 15,683 asylum seekers were detained compared to a staggering 44,228 in 2014.

Despite US international legal obligations, the report added, and support for refugees globally, the United States “is falling far short at home.”US Congress, the report recommended, must rescind automatic and mandatory immigration detention procedures that are wasting limited government resources.

Moreover, US immigration, homeland security and law enforcement agencies need to assure fair and prompt release processes that do not “penalize asylum seekers for their manner of entry, lack of legal representation, or lack of financial resources.”

On September 20, 2016 Obama is set to host a Leaders’ Summit designed to encourage the international community to do more to address the global refugee crisis, according to Human Rights First.

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