Many undocumented immigrants from Mexico have entered the U.S. in recent days requesting asylum, prompting agencies to rent hotel rooms to house them.
If undocumented immigrants have a credible fear of living in their home country, they can try to claim asylum in America. However, they must prove this fear through a lengthy set of interviews and appeals, which can take years. Many unauthorized immigrants use their asylum claim as a way into the country, where they then do not show up for their court date and disappear into the country.
It is estimated that between 600,000 and 800,000 undocumented immigrants a year do exactly that.
Asylum claims are very rare from Mexico. It’s estimated that fewer than 200 claims come in from Mexico each year, let alone 200 in one day, which is what happened late last week.
This has prompted some to be suspicious. Said former Peter Nunez, a former U.S. Attorney for Southern California: “This clearly has to have been orchestrated by somebody. It’s beyond belief that dozens or hundreds or thousands of people would simultaneously decide that they should go to the U.S. and make this claim.”
91 percent of asylum claims from Mexico are denied. It is speculated that many of those who have entered recently have no intention of going through the system and instead are using the process as their ticket into the country.