Nearly half of the 27 Iraqi Christians the Obama administration has been holding for the past six months at an ICE detention center in Otay Mesa, California, are set to be deported in coming weeks, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement said Monday.
An immigration judge ordered their removal in the last two weeks, ICE spokeswoman Lauren Mack said. She declined to provide specific information about why the immigrants are being deported and where they will be taken.
Immigrants who face deportation are typically returned to the country where they were living before entering the United States. It’s likely that most of the Iraqis will be deported to such countries as Australia, New Zealand, Turkey, Lebanon and Jordan, where many United Nations refugee camps are stationed . . .
The 27 Iraqi Christians — also known as Chaldeans — have been detained in Otay for about six months as their immigration cases proceeded, activists and family members told the San Diego Union-Tribune.
The Chaldeans were detained by immigration authorities after they attempted to cross the U.S.-Mexico border through the San Ysidro Port of Entry without documentation several months ago. (Read more from “Obama Set to Deport 12 Iraqi Christian Refugees” HERE)