Obama Breaks Silence On Immigrant Family Separations

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President Donald Trump has backed down and abandoned his policy of separating immigrant children from their families on the U.S. -Mexico border, after images of youngsters in cages sparked outrage at home and overseas.

Here's how Trump and other administration officials said earlier on family separations before Trump announced the upcoming executive order.

Trump signed an executive order on Wednesday (local time) requiring that immigrant families be detained together when they are caught entering the country illegally for as long as their criminal proceedings take.

"It's very important", Trump told reporters during a White House meeting with members of Congress.

First Lady Melania Trump, in private conversations with the president, urged him to do something, a White House official said.

"The dilemma is that if you're weak, if you're weak, which some people would like you to be, if you're really, really pathetically weak, the country's going to be overrun with millions of people", Trump said.

Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen is drafting an executive action for President Donald Trump that would direct DHS to keep families apprehended at the border together during detention. Existing policies place the burden on parents to find their children in Department of Health and Human Services custody and seek to reunite with them.

McClatchy reported Thursday that the Obama administration also separated families who were detained at the border.

Customs and Border Protection people who've been taken into custody related to cases of illegal entry into the United States sit in one of the cages at a facility in McAllen Texas Sunday

And daughter Ivanka Trump tweeted, "Thank you @POTUS for taking critical action ending family separation at our border". Saudis begin Yemen offensive House panel rejects war authorization sunset it passed a year ago MORE (D-Calif.) is asking the United Nations to probe the impact of the Trump administration's controversial "zero tolerance" immigration policy at the border.

Senate Republicans on Tuesday moved to end a political crisis inflicted on the party by President Trump by voicing support for an immigration bill that would end the separation of children from their parents and guardians at the border.

Before that, Trump said in the same speech, "Under current law, we have only two policy options to respond to this massive crisis".

The Democratic mayor said he didn't know until that morning that such large numbers of children taken from their parents were being brought to NY. If children are to be sent here he should demand paperwork connecting those children to a parent somewhere.

One of them said Nielsen, who had become the face of the administration's policy, had little faith that Congress would act to fix the separation issue and felt compelled to act.

The measure would also offer protections to another vulnerable group - Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals recipients - who are undocumented immigrants brought to the United States as children.

The aim is to legally work around a settlement that prevents the detention of families together for more than 20 days, or defy the order and force it back into court to argue for changes to settlement. The decision did not state parents must be released.

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