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Press Release // Immigration and Asylum

Global Refuge Appalled by Texas Immigrant Family Separations

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Global Refuge Staff

August 4, 2023


August 3, 2023

Contact: Tim Young |

Washington, D.C. – Global Refuge is deeply disturbed by new reports that Texas state troopers have separated dozens of migrant families at the U.S.-Mexico border under the state’s Operation Lone Star. Having worked to reunite over 1,100 families forcibly separated under the Trump administration’s “Zero Tolerance” policy in 2018, we are appalled to witness the revival of one of our nation’s darkest chapters.

The development comes on the heels of revelations about Operation Lone Star, which sparked widespread criticism for pushing back migrants into the Rio Grande, serious injuries as a result of razor-wire barriers, and the deployment of a floating deterrence buoy wall. Today, reports further revealed that the bodies of two deceased people, including a Honduran child, were found in or near the buoy wall.

The following is a statement by Krish O’Mara Vignarajah, President & CEO of Global Refuge:

“These latest deterrence tactics incorporated into Operation Lone Star ratchet up the reprehensible cruelty and inhumanity of the Abbott administration’s multi-billion dollar political stunt. Border pushbacks, razor wire, floating buoy walls, and systemic family separation have absolutely no place on the doorstep of the world’s humanitarian leader.

It is incumbent upon the Abbott administration to recognize the inherent humanity of people in desperate need of safety. Despite so much hardship in their homeland, and despite the trauma of leaving everything behind, asylum seekers find the strength to make an incredibly treacherous journey in search of a brighter, safer future for themselves and their children. Their unwavering resolve to rebuild their lives and contribute positively to their new communities exemplifies the strength of this nation of immigrants.

There is no world in which these callous antics are acceptable. Governor Abbott must immediately put an end to the intentional suffering, fear, and despair that these political stunts have inflicted on vulnerable people who have already endured unimaginable adversity.”

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