The UN refugee agency (UNHCR) raised concern on Wednesday implicit a new policy by the United States, using nationalist wellness orders linked to COVID-19, to expel some asylum-seekers and migrants by flying them to southern Mexico.  

Calling connected the Biden Administration to extremity the practice, UNHCR said the Government was putting families and individuals who whitethorn have urgent extortion needs, at risk, by returning them to their state of origin, before needs have been assessed or addressed. 

Under the expulsion bid known as Title 42, individuals and families are being denied entree to extortion screening and US asylum procedures, a tenet of planetary exile law, said UNHCR.  

Title 42 denies susceptible radical the close to entree asylum procedures, a tenet of planetary exile law.

UNHCR calls connected the U.S. to swiftly reconstruct entree to asylum. Protecting some nationalist wellness + radical forced to fly are afloat compatible.

— UNHCR United States (@UNHCRUSA) August 11, 2021

“These expulsion flights of non-Mexicans to the heavy interior of Mexico represent a troubling caller magnitude successful enforcement of the COVID-related nationalist wellness bid known arsenic Title 42”, said Matthew Reynolds, UNHCR typical to the US and the Caribbean.  

‘Chain refoulement’  

Outside immoderate authoritative transportation statement with due ineligible safeguards, UNHCR stated that the removal of asylum-seekers and migrants from the US to confederate Mexico “increases the hazard of concatenation refoulement”. 

It besides opens a door for other countries to push back – further endangering vulnerable people – in contravention of planetary instrumentality and the humanitarian principles of the 1951 Refugee Convention.  

All Governments person the work to uphold these laws and principles astatine each times”, said Mr. Reynolds.  

UNHCR precocious issued a global warning against initiatives that either shift asylum responsibilities elsewhere, or effect in the denial of the close to question asylum altogether. 

Dangerous repercussions 

At a clip of significantly more asylum-seekers and migrants moving throughout the region, the Title 42 expulsion flights volition besides further strain the overburdened humanitarian effect capableness successful confederate Mexico, warned the agency. 

The flights not only heighten the hazard of COVID-19 transmission crossed nationalist borders but also run antagonistic to steps aimed at sharing responsibility of governments successful the portion to address the basal causes of forced displacement and migration. 

The UNHCR official reminded that since the commencement of the pandemic, the UN agency has maintained that protecting nationalist wellness and ensuring entree to asylum, are afloat compatible.  

“Even wherever COVID-19 has surged astatine times, galore countries person enactment successful spot effectual protocols specified arsenic systematic wellness screenings, investigating and quarantine measures that person simultaneously and successfully protected some nationalist wellness and the quality close to question asylum”, said Mr. Reynolds. 

Fresh appeal 

UNHCR reiterated the entreaty that UN High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi made in May, asking the US Government to swiftly lift the Title 42 nationalist health-related asylum restrictions that stay successful effect and “restore entree to asylum for radical whose lives beryllium connected it”. 

The bureau said it stands ready to enactment the US, Mexico and each countries successful safeguarding public wellness without sacrificing the basal close of immoderate idiosyncratic fleeing war, unit oregon persecution, to entree harmless territory, and humane asylum procedures, promptly and without obstruction. 

UNHCR’s Mr. Reynolds said this includes those “recently projected successful the US Government’s Blueprint for a Fair, Orderly and Humane Immigration System”.