Judge leans toward allowing separated migrant children to pursue own asylum claims

SAN DIEGO – A San Diego judge put an indefinite freeze on deportations of migrant families Thursday, saying the evidence weighs heavily in favor of a court order that would allow all children to pursue asylum claims in the U.S. rather than be deported with their parents, the San Diego Union-Tribune reported.

The temporary restraining order issued by U.S. District Judge Dana Sabraw is the latest development in the effort to reunite some 2,500 children with parents who had been separated at the border under the Trump administration’s enforcement policies, according to the newspaper.

The halt to deportations means those currently housed in family detention centers, as well as parents with final removal orders who have signed papers electing to be deported without their children, will continue to remain in limbo as lawyers for both sides litigate the issue.

About 2,000 children have been reunited with their parents in the U.S. Many families have been released into the community on parole, although a few hundred with final removal orders are detained and believed to be at risk of immediate deportation.

The judge’s decision will be discussed at a court hearing Friday afternoon, although the judge has given both sides at least a week to come to an agreement on how to proceed.

Read more at San Diego Union-Tribune.