Correction: Asylum Requests story

Jul 17, 2013, 12:26 PM

WASHINGTON (AP) – In a story July 16 about asylum requests, The Associated Press reported erroneously the name of the agency that compiled the figures. It was U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, not Immigrations and Customs Enforcement.

A corrected version of the story is below:

Asylum requests from immigrants on the rise in US

Asylum requests nearly quadruple, bulk of requesters are Central American immigrants

By ALICIA A. CALDWELL

Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) _ Requests for asylum in the United States have nearly quadrupled in the last five years, mostly due to claims by immigrants coming from El Salvador, Honduras and Guatemala, according to internal figures from U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services obtained by The Associated Press.

According draft testimony for USCIS Associate Director Joseph Langlois that was to be submitted for a congressional hearing on asylum requests last month, USCIS received more than 19,119 asylum requests through the end of May. The agency anticipates receiving more than 28,600 by the end of the fiscal year.

According to the testimony, during the 2009 budget year the agency received just 5,369 such requests.

In the drafted comments, Langlois said about 2/3 of the requests have come from El Salvador, Honduras and Guatemala. He said the surge in asylum requests, which he describes in the document as “credible fear” claims, has occurred predominantly in the Rio Grande Valley in South Texas. So far this year, more than 12,400 requests have come from South Texas, compared to about 3,400 in 2009, according to Langlois’ testimony.

Langlois attributed to the spike in asylum requests from Central Americans to reports of increased drug trafficking, violence and overall rising crime in those countries.

The jump in asylum requests coincides with a spike in arrests of illegal borders crossers in the same area. At the end of May, Border Patrol agents in the area had apprehended more than 90,000 would-be immigrants. More than half of those people were from countries other than Mexico, primarily Central America.

That region, now the busiest Border Patrol sector along the Mexican border, started to see a spike in Central American immigrants during the 2012 budget year.

Langlois was initially scheduled to testify about asylum requests before a House oversight and government reform subcommittee last month, but that appearance was canceled. He is expected to testify Wednesday.

The asylum process has been among many points of contention in the ongoing debate over immigration reform. Under a recently passed Senate bill, immigrants already living in the United States would no longer be required to apply for asylum within a year of arriving. Critics have complained that lifting that time limit will open the process to abuse and, potentially, fraud.

The prospects for asylum seekers are murky. Since 2003, the U.S. has granted an average of 11,890 requests. During that same time, a combined total of just 5,927 people from El Salvador, Honduras and Guatemala were given protection in the U.S., according to data published by the Department of Homeland Security. The number people who asked for protection during that time was not available.

In order to win asylum in the United States, an immigrant must to prove he is being persecuted because of race, religion, political view, nationality or membership in a particular social group. He also have to prove that his government is either part of the persecution or unable or unwilling to protect him.

___

Follow Alicia A. Caldwell on Twitter at
http://www.twitter.com/acaldwellap

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

Uncategorized

FILE - A sign bearing the company logo is displayed outside a Tesla store in Cherry Creek Mall in D...
Associated Press

US has over 750 complaints of Teslas braking for no reason

DETROIT (AP) — More than 750 Tesla owners have complained to U.S. safety regulators that cars operating on the automaker’s partially automated driving systems have suddenly stopped on roadways for no apparent reason. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration revealed the number in a detailed information request letter to Tesla that was posted Friday on […]
1 month ago
A destroyed window of a house is seen during a military sweep to search for possible remnants of Ru...
Associated Press

Zelenskyy: Retreating Russians leave many mines behind

KYIV, Ukraine (AP) — Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy warned his people early Saturday that retreating Russian forces were creating “a complete disaster” outside the capital as they leave mines across “the whole territory,” even around homes and corpses. He issued the warning as the humanitarian crisis in the encircled city of Mariupol deepened, with Russian […]
3 months ago
...
Arizona Department of Gaming

While March brings upsets and buzzer-beaters, it also needs to bring caution

In March, basketball fans around the country glue themselves in front of a television for almost 11 hours for four consecutive days.
3 months ago
Follow @KTAR923...
KTAR.com

Some of the greatest Big Game comebacks in NFL history

The Big Game has brought some of the best and worst comebacks for not only the casual fan, but gambling fans.
5 months ago
...
No Author

Broomhead’s Action Alliance

Sign up to make a difference! Join Broomhead's Action Alliance to learn about upcoming volunteer opportunities where you'll work side by side with Mike Broomhead in service to others.
7 months ago
KTAR.com

Couple residing in Chandler arrested for AHCCCS, pandemic loan fraud

A couple residing in Chandler was arrested on Wednesday for allegedly fraudulently billing the Arizona healthcare system and for fraud in their applications for COVID-19 pandemic-related loans, authorities said.
11 months ago

Sponsored Articles

...
Dr. Richard Carmona

Great news: Children under 5 can now get COVID-19 vaccine

After more than two years of battle with an invisible killer, we can now vaccinate the youngest among us against COVID-19. This is great news.
(Courtesy Condor)...
Condor Airlines

Condor Airlines shows passion for destinations from Sky Harbor with new-look aircraft

Condor Airlines brings passion to each flight and connects people to their dream destinations throughout the world.
...
Carla Berg, MHS, Deputy Director, Public Health Services, Arizona Department of Health Services

Update your child’s vaccines before kindergarten

So, your little one starts kindergarten soon. How exciting! You still have a few months before the school year starts, so now’s the time to make sure students-to-be have the vaccines needed to stay safe as they head into a new chapter of life.