Starting in October, the Obama administration increased the number of refugees admitted to the U.S. to 110,000 for the year.
Officials confirmed some of the refugees’ countries of origin to be Iran, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Somalia, Iraq and Sudan.
In that sense, the Obama administration has written a secret deal that could let Australia ship more than 2,400 refugees waiting to enter its borders over to the U.S. instead, including refugees from terrorism-connected countries such as Somalia and Syria.
Trump took to Twitter on Wednesday to call the Obama administrations refugee program a “dumb deal.” Trump’s administration also said “extreme vetting” would be used to check refugee cases.
“The United States has agreed to consider referrals from the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) of refugees now residing in Nauru and Papua New Guinea,” the State Department said in a statement late last year. “These refugees are of special interest to UNHCR and we are engaged on a humanitarian basis, as we are in other parts of the world.”
Australia has been under fire for paying the surrounding island nations to house the refugees. The camps were reportedly created in an effort to curtail “people smuggling.”
Australia has long had a policy which prevents individuals seeking asylum from entering the country before proper vetting.
During a press conference in November of last year Turnbull said, “Nobody is taking any more refugees, but what the Americans are doing is assisting these individuals on Nauru and Manus by bringing them in within their existing quota.”
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