VOA Immigration Weekly Recap, Nov. 6–19

Editor’s note: Here’s a look at immigration-related news from around the United States this week. Issue? Tips? Comments? Email the VOA Immigration Team at: [email protected]

Nonimmigrant visa backlog is shrinking, State Department official says

The Biden administration has reduced wait times worldwide for nonimmigrant visa interviews, an official said Thursday. But the progress has been disputed by one immigration policy analyst who follows the issue closely. VOA’s immigration correspondent Aline Barros reports from Washington.

Judge delays ending asylum restrictions until late December

A federal judge on Wednesday granted the Biden administration a five-week delay to end far-reaching refugee restrictions, capitalizing on the fact that he is doing so “very reluctantly,” the Associated Press reported.

International students return to US as pandemic declines

International students are returning to the United States after a significant decline during the pandemic, according to the Open Doors 2022 report on International Educational Exchange (IEE). VOA’s immigration correspondent Aline Barros reports from Washington.

Cuba agrees to accept US extradition flights as border crossings increase

Cuba has agreed to accept U.S. deportation flights carrying Cubans seized at the U.S.-Mexico border for the first time since the pandemic, three U.S. officials told Reuters, giving U.S. authorities a new but limited tool to prevent a record number of Cuban border crossers. gives reports.

Report: Forced ouster of US Border Agency chief

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The head of U.S. Customs and Border Protection is being forced out of his job at the nation’s largest law enforcement agency as agents encounter a record number of migrants entering the United States from Mexico, two people familiar with the matter said.

US extends protected status for 6 nationals until mid-2024

The United States will extend the temporary protected status of its citizens to El Salvador and five other countries until June 30, 2024, El Salvador’s ambassador to the United States, Milena Mayorga, said Thursday. The other countries are Haiti, Nicaragua, Sudan, Honduras and Nepal, according to a document filed Thursday by US Citizenship and Immigration Services. The move means their Temporary Protected Status (TPS) will not expire on December 31, 2022 as previously planned, Reuters reports.

Afghan Americans are voting with an eye on Afghan refugee issues

Some Afghan Americans living in Northern Virginia said they are determined to vote in the midterm elections and that US foreign policy on Afghanistan and immigration are most important to them. Matiullah Abid Noor and Shahnaz Nafees have the story. Roshan Noorzai contributed to this report.

Meta layoffs deepen job losses in Silicon Valley

Widespread layoffs in the US tech industry have put thousands of Silicon Valley workers out of a job, a trend that was greatly amplified by Facebook’s parent company Meta Platforms on Wednesday when it announced it would cut 13% of its workforce. . 11,000 jobs.

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Immigration around the world

Blackening in Tunisia

Growing up in a working-class Tunis neighborhood, Zied Rouine didn’t think much of the color of his skin. Not when kids taunted him at school or when his soccer teammates nicknamed him Pele after Brazil’s dark-skinned soccer legend. His athletic prowess and staunch defense of his lighter-skinned brother from persecutors were tickets to acceptance. Years later, while attending an international forum on discrimination, Ruin realized something was wrong. Lisa Bryant reports for VOA from Paris.

England, France join forces to stem the tide of migrants across the English Channel

Britain and France are joining forces to stem the tide of migrants coming to England across the English Channel. According to the new agreement, Britain is ready to pay France $75 million to strengthen security to prevent migrants and refugees from crossing the dangerous waterway from France in small boats, VOA News reported.

After the conflict with Italy, France takes over an immigrant ship

France has resolved a day-long dispute with Italy’s right-wing government by agreeing to take on a ship carrying more than 200 migrants rescued in the Mediterranean. Ocean Viking is due to dock in the southern French port of Toulon on Friday – but relations with Rome remain strained. For the 234 migrants aboard the Ocean Viking, France’s agreement to take them in marked the end of a long odyssey. Lisa Bryant reports for VOA from Paris.

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German aid group: 89 migrants allowed to land in Italy

A German humanitarian group said its ship docked in southern Italy early Tuesday and disembarked 89 people rescued at sea, ending the story of one migrant rescue as others remain under Italy’s new hard-right government. Mission Lifeline posted video on social media of the 25-meter (80-foot) ascent of the cargo dock in Reggio Calabria and said “the odyssey of the 89 passengers and nine crew members appears to have come to an end.” In a later post, the Associated Press reported that all 89 were cleared to disembark.

News brief

— U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services announced in November that it would accept some permanent asylum applications online. USCIS continues to accept the latest paper version of this form by mail.

– U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) released updated numbers showing a record number of immigrant encounters at the U.S.-Mexico border. According to CBP’s latest release, “The number of unique Southwest border encounters in October 2022 was 185,527, an increase of 1.5% from the previous month.

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