Protesters, Dems: Reunite immigrant families


Associated Press

MCALLEN, TEXAS

Demonstrators led rallies and protests Saturday to decry the separation of immigrant parents from their children by U.S. border authorities, while Democratic lawmakers said they aren’t convinced the Trump administration has any real plan to reunite them.

Hundreds of people rallied near a Homestead, Fla., facility where immigrant children are being held. Demonstrators also marched in San Diego carrying signs reading “Free the Kids” and “Keep Families Together.”

Outside a border patrol facility in McAllen, Texas, protesters temporarily blocked a bus carrying immigrants and shouted “Shame! Shame!” at border agents.

The demonstrations came days after the Trump administration reversed course in the face of public and political outrage and had authorities stop separating immigrant families caught crossing the U.S.-Mexico border.

In recent weeks, more than 2,300 children were taken from their families under a “zero-tolerance” policy in which people entering the U.S. illegally face prosecution. Though the family separations were ended, confusion has ensued, with parents left searching for their children.

The administration says it will seek to detain immigrant families during their immigration proceedings, which has also stoked an outcry.

Department of Homeland Security spokesman Tyler Houlton issued a statement that criticized protests in Portland, Ore., against immigration-enforcement activities that closed federal immigration offices there this week, but did not address the other demonstrations occurring around the country Saturday.

More protests are planned for next weekend in states from Connecticut to California.

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