(CNN Spanish) — A source from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) told CNN on Thursday that, after talks with the Colombian government this month, the United States began deporting citizens of that country based on the so-called Title 42 , a policy put into practice in the era of former President Donald Trump.
Title 42, invoked by the Trump administration at the start of the coronavirus pandemic, allows authorities to expeditiously remove immigrants — something that happened especially along the Mexican border. The application of this rule prevents asylum seekers from presenting their case before immigration justice and marks a deviation from the protocol still in force in the US.
A US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) source told CNN Thursday that it resumed its flights to Colombia on March 4 and has facilitated the removal of several hundred Colombian citizens.
This ICE source also said that all passengers have undergone medical examinations and that before being sent to Colombia they are checked for symptoms of covid-19.
Although at the beginning of his administration, the administration of President Joe Biden seemed willing to stop using Title 42, he has kept it in force, citing as a basis the health situation created by the appearance of the delta and omicron variants of covid-19.
The Latin American country “has received nearly 600 Colombian citizens, all of legal age, returned from the United States on six flights,” Migration Colombia confirmed in a statement. He explained that this figure corresponds to the month of March and that the trips were paid for by the US authorities.