Canada is rejecting more refugee claims from people who crossed the border illegally as Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s government seeks to dissuade, block and turn back thousands more, according to new data obtained by Reuters.
Forty percent of such border crossers whose claims were finalized in the first three months of this year were granted refugee status, down from 53 percent for all of 2017, according to data provided by Canada’s Immigration and Refugee Board. There were no claims finalized in the first three months of 2017.
The wave of illegal border crossings started up in January 2017 and ramped up over the summer as many Haitian immigrants in the United States who were at risk of losing their temporary legal status streamed into Canada on expectations that they could find a safe haven. In the months since, thousands of Nigerians have made the same crossing.
More than 27,000 asylum seekers have walked across the Canada-U.S. border since President Donald Trump took office, some of whom have told Reuters they left the United States because of Trump’s policies and rhetoric toward immigrants.