Thursday , June 8 2023
Canadian law enforcement and news media await border crossers on the Quebec side of Roxham Road. Image shot from the U.S. side in Champlain, NY. Photo: Zach Hirsch

US and Canada reach deal to reject asylum seekers

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The United States and Canada have reached an agreement that would allow America’s northern neighbor to turn away asylum-seekers attempting to cross the U.S.-Canada border at unofficial points of entry, according to media reports.

The deal, which is expected to be announced at the end of President Biden’s visit to Ottawa on Friday, will reportedly expand a decades-old treaty between the two countries known as the Safe Third Country Agreement, CNN reported.

The Safe Third Country Agreement requires that asylum-seekers request refugee protection in the first safe country they arrive in. As a result, migrants attempting to enter Canada from the U.S. at official ports of entry would be turned away.

However, the treaty did not previously include asylum-seekers who crossed at unofficial points of entry, such as Roxham Road, a popular unofficial crossing in New Yorkaccording to The New York Times.

The new deal set to be announced by Biden and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau would allow Canada to turn away such asylum-seekers.

As part of the agreement, Canada has also reportedly agreed to create a program that would allow 15,000 migrants fleeing violence, persecution and economic hardship in South and Central America to seek asylum in Canada, the Times reported.

 

About Charles Igbinidu

Charles Igbinidu is a Public Relations practitioner in Lagos, Nigeria

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