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Hundreds march in Phoenix-area in support of refugee, immigrant rights


PHOENIX — More than 200 people marched in Tempe on Thursday night to show support for refugee and immigrant rights, marking the end of a week that saw a host of anti-immigration actions taken by President Donald Trump.

The group marched down Mill Avenue in downtown Tempe, carrying signs and banners that read “Love For All” and chanting “Si, se puede!” — a Spanish phrase that translates to, “Yes, it’s possible.”

Tempe Police spokeswoman Lily Duran said the march consisted of about 250 people and was “peaceful and cooperative.”

The march was held by Us United, a non-profit organization that aims to “promote awareness of global issues, such as starvation, disease and environmentally-triggered events around the world.”

According to a Facebook page of the event, nearly 500 people had said they would attend the march, which was dubbed an “emergency rally.”

Issues surrounding immigrants and refugees have dominated the news cycle during Trump’s first week in office, as he signed an executive order to begin construction on a border wall on Wednesday.

Arizona lawmakers differed in their reactions to the border wall proposal, with some supporting it fully, while others rejected in outright and some had their reservations about the move.

The wall, which is expected to cost billions of dollars, will be paid for by taxpayers, but Trump has insisted that Mexico will pay the country back in full, and proposed a 20 percent import tax on the country — though its leaders have repeatedly denied that they will.

Trump planned to meet with Mexican president Enrique Pena Nieto next week, but Nieto cancelled the meeting after the executive order was signed.

Trump is also expected to sign a sweeping executive order that would include a temporary ban on all refugees and a suspension of visas for citizens in seven Middle Eastern and African countries, including Syria.

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