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Updated December 19th, 2023 at 23:01 IST

Texas Governor signs law allowing police to arrest illegal migrants and judges to expel them

Texas Governor Greg Abbott stirred headlines on Monday after he signed a bill giving all police in the state the power to arrest illegal migrants.

Digital Desk
Texas governor signs law to allow police arrest illegal migrants
Texas governor signs law to allow police arrest illegal migrants | Image:AP
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Amid the ongoing migration crisis in the United States, Texas Governor Greg Abbott stirred headlines on Monday after he signed a bill giving all police in the state the power to arrest illegal migrants. With this new legislation, the Texas police will have the sweeping powers to arrest anyone who they deem to have entered the United States illegally, ABC News reported. As per the new bill, the local judges in the state will also have the power to expel these illegal migrants back across the US-Mexico border. 

The brazen action by the Republican governor challenged the federal government's authority to challenge the US immigration law. Before reaching the Governor's table, the law was passed by the Republican-dominated Texas legislature legislature last month, despite angry objections from Democratic lawmakers. 

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Mexico condemns the Bill 

When the proposed legislation first made the headlines, the Mexican government slammed the measures, warning that this might lead to families getting separated. They argued that the legislation also has the potential to increase the cases of racial profiling in the state. “The Mexican government categorically rejects any measure that would allow local or state authorities to detain or deport Mexicans or other nationalities to Mexican soil,” Mexico’s foreign relations department wrote in a statement.

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Over the years migrants have been facing atrocities in the southern states of the United States. Shortly after US President Joe Biden assumed office in 2021, headlines started to emerge that Texas police have made deal with landowners and are indiscriminately arresting migrants entering the landowners' property. 

While they did not have the authority to arrest them over breaching the immigration law (since that power resides with federal authorities at that time), they charged them with trespassing. The Texas governor himself was accused of pushing thousands of migrants to Democratic-run cities across the country without coordinating with them. After the law was proposed in Texas legislatures, Thirty former US immigration judges, who served under both Republican and Democratic administrations, signed a letter condemning the measure, calling it unconstitutional. 

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Published December 19th, 2023 at 23:00 IST

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