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.
The border closure that almost happened (and could still happen)
President Trump’s days-old threat to close the U.S.-Mexico — a move that would disrupt the flow of 15,000 trucks and $1.6 billion in commerce daily, along with the lives of residents on either side — has ended with a retreat … for now.
The president’s move came in reaction to an increase in the number of Central American migrants crossing the border, which U.S. Customs and Border Protection Commissioner Kevin McAleenan called “the breaking point” last week.
Meanwhile, The Trump administration decided to cut $450 million in foreign aid to programs in El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras — countries he has repeatedly criticized for doing little to stem the migration crisis. That, too, could backfire.
Largest workplace raid since 2008
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement raided a Texas electronics repair company on Wednesday, arresting 280 employees for “unlawfully working in the United States,” according to officials. The arrests culminated in the largest work site raid in more than a decade, and the largest sweep under the Trump Administration.
Refugee arrivals projected to be low … again
Last fall, President Trump set the lowest refugee ceiling in nearly four decades. At the current rate of 2,025 arrivals per month, the U.S. may surpass last year’s number of arrivals, but barely. Among those accepted, a VOA analysis of data shows an increasing share of Christian refugees this fiscal year — 81% — as compared to historical trends.
Somali blast victim tried repeatedly to flee violence
Leaving behind a wife and a 6-year-daughter, Ahmed Salah Hassan repeatedly attempted to flee ongoing violence in his native Somalia before it was too late. But a failed bid for asylum in the U.S. ultimately led to Hassan’s return to Mogadishu, where he was one of 12 people killed by a car bomb last Thursday. VOA’s Somali Service recounts the victim’s tragic story.