Editor’s note: Here’s a look at immigration-related news from around the US this week. Questions? Tips? Comments? Email the VOA Immigration Team: [email protected]
Non-immigrant visa backlog is shrinking, State Department official says
The Biden administration has reduced wait times worldwide for nonimmigrant visa interviews, an official said Thursday. But progress is disputed by immigration policy analysts who follow the issue closely. VOA’s immigration correspondent Aline Barros reports from Washington.
The judge delayed the end of the asylum ban until the end of December
A federal judge on Wednesday granted the Biden administration a five-week delay to end far-reaching asylum restrictions, writing in capital letters that it is doing so “with great reluctance,” the Associated Press reports.
International students return to US after pandemic subsides
According to the Open Doors 2022 report on International Educational Exchange (IEE), international students are returning to the United States after a significant decline during the pandemic. VOA’s immigration correspondent Aline Barros reports from Washington.
Cuba agrees to accept U.S. deportation flights amid increased border crossings
Cuba has agreed for the first time since the pandemic to accept US deportation flights carrying Cubans caught at the US-Mexico border, three US officials told Reuters, giving US authorities a new but limited tool to stop a record number of Cuban border-crossers, Reuters reports.
Report: US Border Agency Chief Being Forced Out
The head of US Customs and Border Protection is being removed from his job leading the nation’s largest law enforcement agency as agents deal with record numbers of migrants entering the US from Mexico, the Associated Press reports.
The United States has notified El Salvador that the temporary protected status of its citizens and five other countries will be extended until June 30, 2024, El Salvador’s ambassador to the United States, Milena Mayorga, said Thursday. The other countries are Haiti, Nicaragua, Sudan, Honduras and Nepal, according to a document filed Thursday by US Citizenship and Immigration Services. The action means their Temporary Protected Status (TPS) will not expire on December 31, 2022, as previously scheduled, Reuters reports.
Afghan Americans vote with an eye toward Afghan refugee issues
Some Afghan Americans living in northern Virginia said they are determined to vote in the midterm elections and that US foreign policy toward Afghanistan and immigration are most important to them. The story of Matiullah Abid Noor and Shahnaz Nafees. Roshan Noorzai contributed to this report.
Meta layoffs exacerbate Silicon Valley job losses
Widespread layoffs in the US technology industry have thrown tens of thousands of workers out of work in Silicon Valley, a trend greatly amplified on Wednesday by Facebook’s parent company Meta Platforms, which announced it would cut 13% of its workforce, amounting to more than 11,000 jobs. .
Immigration around the world
Being Black in Tunisia
Growing up in a working-class Tunis neighborhood, Zeid Rouyn didn’t think much about the color of his skin. Not after the dark-skinned Brazilian football legend, when kids insulted him at school, or when his football teammates nicknamed him Pele. His athletic prowess and fierce protection of his light-skinned brother from persecutors was his ticket to acceptance. It was only years later, while attending an international forum on discrimination, that Ruin realized something was wrong. Lisa Bryant reports for VOA from Paris.
England, France join forces to stem the tide of migrants across the English Channel
Britain and France have joined forces to stem the tide of migrants crossing the English Channel to England. Under a new agreement, Britain is set to pay France $75 million to strengthen security that will prevent migrants and asylum seekers from navigating small vessels from France on the dangerous waterway, VOA News reports.
After a skirmish with Italy, France intercepts migrant ships
France has resolved a days-long dispute with Italy’s right-wing government by agreeing to take on board more than 200 migrants rescued in the Mediterranean. The Ocean Viking is due to dock at the southern French port of Toulon on Friday – but relations with Rome remain sour. For the 234 migrants aboard the Ocean Viking, France’s agreement to take them was the end of a long odyssey. Lisa Bryant reports for VOA from Paris.
German aid group: 89 migrants allowed to land in Italy
A German humanitarian group said its ship docked in southern Italy early Tuesday and rescued 89 people at sea, ending a migrant rescue saga as others continue under Italy’s new hard-right government. Mission Lifeline posted videos on social media of the 25-meter (80-foot) rise freighter docking in Reggio Calabria, saying “the odyssey of the 89 passengers and nine crew members on board appears to be over.” In a subsequent post, he said all 89 were cleared to land, the Associated Press reports.
– US Citizenship and Immigration Services announced in November that it was accepting some affirmative asylum applications online. USCIS continues to accept the latest paper version of this form by mail.
– US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) is the US Mexico has released updated statistics showing a record number of migrant encounters at the border. “The total number of unique Southwest border encounters in October 2022 was 185,527, an increase of 1.5% compared to the previous month, due to an increased number of asylum seekers fleeing authoritarian regimes in Cuba and Nicaragua,” according to the latest CBP release.