US slashes number of refugees to 30K for next year

GUILLERMO ARIAS  AFP

GUILLERMO ARIAS AFP

The US will allow no more than 30,000 refugees into the country in the coming year, down by a third from last year's cap, the secretary of state, Mike Pompeo, has announced. The actual number allowed could be lower.

NBC reporter Josh Lederman wrote on Twitter that in announcing the cuts, Mr. Pompeo noted a "case of an individual resettled in USA who was found to have ties to Islamic State group".

It compares with a 45,000-refugee limit set by President Donald Trump for 2018 and 50,000 the year before.

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The lower numbers reflect the Trump administration's opposition to accepting refugees and other immigrants into the US.

That approach has already driven down refugee admissions to America's lowest level in a decade.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced "the new refugee ceiling", adding the USA would also process more than 280,000 asylum seekers in 2019. When Donald Trump took office the ceiling on refugees the United States was prepared to welcome each year was 110,000.

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