U.S. government says it will detain migrant children with parents

01 July, 2018, 16:39 | Author: Sheila Harris
  • Protesters arrested during #WomenDisobey demonstration at Senate office building

Almost 600 protesters were arrested during a clangorous occupation of a US Senate office building in Washington on Thursday, where they decried US President Donald Trump's "zero- tolerance" stance on illegal immigration.

About 20 people were threatened and cursed while at the Federal Detention Center in downtown Los Angeles Saturday to stage a counter-demonstration in response to the "Families Belong Together" rally and march, in which thousands of people opposed to the administration's border policies were demonstrating.

In Portland, Oregon, several stay-at-home mothers have organised their first rally while caring for young children.

Immigrant advocacy groups say they are thrilled - and surprised - to see the issue gaining traction among those not tied to immigration.

Activists march and rally against Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and the Trump administration's immigration policies, across the street from the ICE offices at Federal Plaza, June 29, 2018 in New York City.

"I could only imagine what it would be like to have my daughter - my breastfeeding child - ripped away from me the way some of these other moms' babies have been".

"I could never survive if that were me".

"It's important for this administration to know that these policies that rip apart families -that treat people as less than human, like they're vermin - are not the way of God, they are not the law of love", said the Rev. Julie Hoplamazian, an Episcopal priest marching in Brooklyn.

In Boston, thousands of people were gearing up for two planned protests.

Sen. Elizabeth Warren and Rep. Joe Kennedy III, both Massachusetts Democrats, were in attendance, with the senator telling the crowd, "This is about children held in cages".

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It is partnering with MoveOn, the American Civil Liberties Union, Leadership Conference on Civil Rights, the National Domestic Workers Alliance and more than 100 other organizations.

Many attendees carried signs, some demanding a change to the administration's policy, others celebrating the contributions that immigrants make to the country.

Demonstrators cross the Brooklyn Bridge as they march against the separation of immigrant families, on June 30, 2018 in NYC. From left to right are Kate Sharaf, Lisa Carol Stiller, Erin Conroy, and Caely Barrett.

Starting in early May, in an attempt to staunch the flow of tens of thousands of migrants to the southern USA border every month, Trump ordered the arrest of adults crossing the boundary illegally, including those seeking asylum. "As we have indicated before, the department is disappointed and frustrated by our nation's disastrous immigration laws and supports action". Tweeting from New Jersey on Saturday, Trump urged ICE agents to "not worry or lose your spirit".

- In Onancock, Virginia, an Eastern Shore town with a population of under 1,300, some 60 people turned out for a march and a "Rally for the Children" protest organized by a grassroots committee. They've also posted downloadable posters and protest signs.

Local organizers did most of the planning and coordination efforts.

"This is not my wheelhouse", Conroy said.

"We need to stand together, and I'm so proud of every single one of us", added comedian Amy Schumer. She said she had been arrested at demonstrations three or four times since she became politically active after Trump's election. "They used another word".

Immigration attorney Linda Rivas said groups have met with United States authorities, congressional representatives, and other leaders to discuss an escalating immigration crackdown that they say began decades ago.

In Washington, Shelley Kohl, a retired business owner from Johnson City, Tennessee, said she does not usually engage in politics, but the images of children being separated from their parents motivated her to travel here for the protests.

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