Saturday, September 9, 2017

ICE Plans, Then Postpones, “Largest Operation" in Its History

On September 7 NBC News reported that Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) was planning to carry out “Operation Mega,” a nationwide series of raids in the middle of the month targeting 8,400 immigrants. Soon afterwards, ICE announced it was cancelling the raids in response to major hurricanes hitting the U.S.—although some speculate that the real reason was the fact that the plan had been leaked. Was this a cancellation or a postponement? Why was ICE planning the escalation? How do mass raids fit in with Trump’s claim that DACA recipients don’t need to worry? And are we ready to resist?—TPOI editor
Milwaukee Protest, February 2017. Photo: The Progressive
Homeland Security Cancels Massive Roundups of Undocumented Immigrants

By Julia Ainsley and Andrew Blankstein, NBC News
September 7, 2017
WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump's Department of Homeland Security had planned nationwide raids to target 8,400 undocumented immigrants later this month, according to three law enforcement officials and an internal document that described the plan as "the largest operation of its kind in the history of ICE," an acronym for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

But after NBC News reported the plans late Thursday, the agency issued a statement saying it had cancelled nationwide enforcement actions due to Hurricane Irma and the damage caused by Hurricane Harvey.[…]

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Austin Immigrant Advocates Demand ICE Release Details on Planned 'Mega Raid'
Reports leaked earlier the immigration enforcement agency plans to root out up to 10,000 undocumented residents; advocates wants specifics.

By Tony Cantu, Downtown Austin Patch
September 8, 2017
AUSTIN, TX — Immigrant advocates in Austin are demanding that U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officials disclose details of the agency's planned "mega-raid" designed to ensnare members of undocumented communities nationwide for deportation.
On Thursday, details emerged about the agency's "Operation Mega" initiative targeting up to 10,000 undocumented immigrants nationwide. Sources suggested the operation would intentionally target anyone in the country currently undocumented.

Now, Austin immigrant advocates are calling on ICE to release documents revealing the scope of the operation.[…]

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Trump Plans Massive Raids on Immigrant Communities Starting Mid-September
Horrific Plan to Target 6,000 - 10,000 for Mass Deportation is Part of Escalating Attacks on Immigrants

By Detention Watch Network
September 7, 2017
Washington, DC — Detention Watch Network (DWN), the National Immigrant Justice Center (NIJC), National Immigration Law Center, United We Dream (UWD) and the Women’s Refugee Commission (WRC) condemn Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) plan to conduct a nationwide immigration enforcement operation from mid- to late-September. Multiple sources within and close to ICE have shared information with advocates about the operation, which ICE is calling “Operation Mega.”   In addition to apprehending targeted individuals prioritized in the president’s January 25 Executive Order, ICE agents will apprehend undocumented or otherwise removable individuals encountered during the operation, per ICE policy under the Trump administration. These raids are intended to be historic in size, targeting between 6,000 and 10,000 immigrants.

Operation Mega is part of a wholesale and escalating attack on all immigrants. In the wake of the end of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrival (DACA) program on Tuesday, it is clear that this administration will not exercise restraint in enacting an anti-immigrant and white supremacist agenda. In fact, earlier this year, Trump’s top immigration agent declared that “no population is off the table.”[…]

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