HIAS Praises Expanded Protection for Central American Refugees

WASHINGTON—In response to the Obama administration’s announcement today of expanded protections for people fleeing violence in El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras, including expanding a program for minors, HIAS President and CEO Mark Hetfield issued the following statement:

“We’re very pleased to see the United States take concrete action to address the ongoing crisis in the Northern Triangle. Costa Rica’s leadership, providing temporary protection for those at most immediate risk, is also laudable. The violence and suffering in that region of the world are acute, and we hope this will be the first of many steps taken to offer much needed assistance there. We also hope the United States will soon do more for Central American asylum seekers here, allowing them to access asylum and not keep them in detention.

“The expansion of the Central American Minors program is also a welcome, compassionate step. We urge the U.S. government to allow kids who have already come to the United States through this program to reunite with their older siblings and caregivers as well.”


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