A federal judge has temporarily blocked a new United States government policy restricted asylum along the southern border only to people arriving at ports of entry.
Jason Cone, executive director of Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF)-USA, made the following statement regarding the decision:
"The latest United States presidential proclamation to limit migration denies many Central Americans the right to seek asylum and puts thousands of lives at risk. While a judge has temporarily blocked the order, the asylum ban, in its current form, would force vulnerable people to remain trapped amidst criminal groups in countries wracked by violence.
People fleeing violence in Central America have a right to seek asylum regardless of how and where they enter the US. Asylum seekers must receive a fair hearing and due process, and must be treated humanely, including through the provision of medical care, protection, and humanitarian assistance.
In Mexico, Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) provides humanitarian assistance to people escaping horrific levels of violence in El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala. Many have survived the murder of family members, kidnapping, recruitment by armed groups, extortion, and sexual violence. Many of them fear death and violence if they are forced to return home.