The United States House of Representatives has asked the Immigration and Customs Enforcement to stop the deportation African asylum-seekers from Cameroon and other countries on the continent.
Karen Bass, Chair of the House Foreign Affairs, Subcommittee on Africa, Bennie Thompson, Shelia Jackson-Lee, Judy Chu, Joaquin Castro and Jamie Raskin disclosed this in a joint statement issued on Tuesday.
The lawmakers said the deportation process by ICE should be put on hold until a new administration is sworn in.
The statement reads, “Our offices have been alerted that African asylum-seekers from Cameroon and other African countries, many of whom were allegedly improperly coerced by ICE to sign voluntary deportation orders, will be deported as early as tomorrow morning. Upon their arrival to their designated countries, many will be at imminent risk of death.
“Their deportation should be put on hold until the new administration is sworn in and able to carefully review these claims. Anything otherwise is outrageous and unacceptable. We plan to introduce a measure this week to condemn this deportation should it take place.
“The United States should uphold its commitment under international treaties related to refugees and asylum-seekers and halt this unjust deportation.”
The US has indicated interest to fly some Cameroonian asylum seekers back to their home country despite fears that their lives will be at risk.
Some of the deportees are activists from the country’s Anglophone minority, who face arrest warrants for their political activities from government forces with a well-documented record of extrajudicial killings.