July 08, 2019
On Sunday, acting director of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services Ken Cuccinelli said immigration agencies are ready to identify, detain, and deport about one million undocumented immigrants who have final removal orders.
“They’re ready to just perform their mission, which is to go and find and detain and then deport the approximately one million people who have final removal orders,” Cuccinelli said on ABC’s “Face the Nation.” Immigration and Customs Enforcement, which is under the Department of Homeland Security, would be responsible for carrying out removal operations.
Cuccinelli said that ICE would discern exactly who will be deported among those with final removal orders.
“They’ve been all the way through the due process and have final removal orders. Who among those will be targeted for this particular effort… is really just information kept within ICE at this point. The pool of those with final removal orders is enormous.”
Cuccinelli’s statement follows President Donald Trump’s Friday announcement that immigration raids would begin “fairly soon” after he delayed the process two weeks ago to allow lawmakers to come up with an acceptable immigration bill that would address issues such as the crisis at the southern U.S. border with Mexico. Currently, there is no bipartisan bill that would pass both chambers of Congress within the president’s preferred timeframe.
ICE said the operation would convey a “powerful message” to deter Central Americans from illegally entering the United States.
Last month, the president tweeted that ICE would begin deporting “millions” of illegal immigrants. Last year, ICE deported more than 250,000 people. The highest number of deportations was carried out in 2012 under President Barack Obama, when approximately 410,000 were removed.
Cuccinelli said that ICE’s efforts to remove illegal aliens have been “held up” and “interfered” with for political reasons and said that ICE agents are prepared to do their job.
“Here we are talking about ICE doing its job as if it’s special, and really this should be going on a rolling basis,” he said. “They’re looking forward to just doing their jobs.”
– MK. II