Editor's note: We want you to know what's happening, why and how it could impact your life, family or business, so we created a weekly digest of the top original immigration, migration and refugee reporting from across VOA. Questions? Tips? Comments? Email the VOA immigration team: ImmigrationUnit@voanews.com.
When 7-year-old Jakelin Caal Maquin, in U.S. Border Patrol custody died, questions arose. A White House spokesman called it "tragic." But the spokesman also said the Trump administration was not responsible and called on Congress to "disincentivize" migrants from making long treks to the southern U.S. border.
The U.S. and Mexican presidents were thinking along similar lines when they talked by phone this week. The White House said the two leaders "discussed the need to address illegal migration from Central America to the United States by addressing the drivers of migration, such as insecurity and economic stagnation."
The wall — again
In a contentious White House meeting with Democratic leaders, President Donald Trump threatened to shut down the government if Congress did not provide $5 billion for a border wall between the U.S. and Mexico. "I am proud to shut down the government for border security," Trump said.
While there do not appear to be votes in either house of Congress for wall funding, the House of Representatives voted overwhelmingly (394-1) to designate Myanmar's campaign against the Rohingya as genocide.
Home for the holidays
The Pentagon has confirmed that some U.S. troops at the southern border will be going home as the original deployment ends Dec. 15. The mission has been extended to the end of January and about 3,000 active-duty troops will be staying. That's slightly more than half of the 5,900 troops initially deployed.
More workplace raids
The Trump administration has greatly stepped up workplace raids looking for undocumented immigrants. In fiscal 2018, 2,304 people were apprehended, compared with 311 in fiscal 2017. The annual data came days after a New York Times report alleging a hotel and golf club in New Jersey owned and frequently visited by Trump employs undocumented workers.
One house, many voices
Three hundred panels tell 300 immigration stories from the very earliest U.S. settlers to those who came involuntarily as slaves. And they are all shown in the framework of a large house at a gallery outside Washington. The One House art exhibit demonstrates how Americans "find strength in diversity," said co-organizer Ellyn Weiss.