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We Call on Biden Admin to Halt All Deportations in interest of Human Rights

We Call on the Biden Administration to Halt All Deportations in the Interest of Historic Human Rights Agreements and Conventions

We urge President-Elect Biden to uphold his commitment to stop all deportations, and to

do so upon his inauguration, to shield himself and his presidency from the commission of

crimes against humanity worthy of a hearing by an international tribunal.

January 18, 2021 - In the final stretch of the discredited Trump administration, the cranked up

deportation machine continues unabated. In addition to nearly 1,000 flights by Swift Air (iAero) since February 2020, as recorded by watchdog group Witness at the Border, ICE Air contractor Omni Air International has returned African nationals seeking asylum in the United States in five consecutive monthly flights since September. The last one left Alexandria, La. in the wee hours of Jan. 14, with approximately 50 Somalis on board, as well as asylum seekers from Kenya and Ethiopia. Many of them had asylum cases still pending. Some had lived in the US for decades.

Reports indicate a small charter flight from Phoenix to Mauritania, a modern slave state, on Tuesday, January 19. Though the government supposedly abolished the practice of enslaving people in 2007, Mauritanians continue to flee to the US in search of safe haven. If they didn’t run from enslavement, they will be targeted for enslavement upon return as they are now considered traitors to their nation.

Omni Air has twice, that we know of, ferried Cameroonian anglophones back to a genocide in which they are the targeted group. Since 2016, following non-violent actions to protest

decades of systemic discrimination and marginalization, 87-year-old President Paul Biya, has

persecuted the minority, English-speaking population.

The first two flights to Cameroon in October and November exposed the culture of coercion

and cruelty used by ICE agents to expel asylum seekers, including shackling them in five-point restraints for the entire journey. The November Omni Air flight took 16 hours to reach Douala, Cameroon; it took 35 hours to land in Luanda, Angola.

Sending asylum seekers back to harm violates Article 14 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Returning asylum seekers with still open cases violates US immigration law, even as it’s been shredded under Trump. But perhaps most egregious of all was the treatment suffered by those who resist deportation. First-hand and eyewitness testimonies reveal practices routinely administered by ICE agents against immigrants , particularly Black immigrants, that fall squarely within the definition of “Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment" pursuant to international human rights law.

As the lame duck president hovers over the US Constitution, holding a lit match, we must all

rise up in condemnation of such abuses being committed in our name. We cannot wait another day to bring decency and legal due process back to our nation. We cannot wait another 100 days to remove from our security and law enforcement agencies the task of managing the futures of those in need of humanitarian aid.

CALL TO ACTION: Contact your congressional representatives starting at 12:01pm on

January 20th. Tell them to stop the US for-profit deportation machine now.


The Witness at the Border Team:

Karla Barber

Thomas Cartwright

Lee Goodman

Camilo Perez-Bustillo

Joshua Rubin

Margaret Seiler

Julie Swift

Sarah Towle



Al Otro Lado, Nicole Elizabeth Ramos

Angry Tias and Abuelas of the RGV, Madeleine Sandefur

Asylum Seeker Network of Support, Gabriela Zavala

CAPAS (Congregational Accompaniment Project for Asylum Seekers), Rev. Dottie Matthews

Church World Service

Don’t Separate Families

Faithful Friends/Amigos Fieles at the Yuba County Jail, Susan Lange

Global Social Work, LLC, Vicki Rosenthal

Going Beyond Sustainability, Shel Horowitz

Guadalupe Presbyterian Church, Salena Petersen-keesecker

Haitian Bridge Alliance, Daniel Tse

Hamilton First Presbyterian Church, Ruth Hazleton

Hope Border Institute, Dylan Corbett

Immigration Justice Action Team of Dutchess County Progressive Action Alliance

ISLA: Immigration Services and Legal Advocacy, Al Page

Louisiana Advocates for Immigrants in Detention, Frances Kelley

Memorial Presbyterian Church, Phoenix, AZ, Cynthia Jennison

Mutual Aid Immigration Network

NHCUCC Immigrant and Refugee Support Group, Nancy Pierpont

OccupyICEPDX, Jay Fakhuri

Ohio Immigrant Alliance, Lynn Tramonte

Refugee Support Network, Ana Maria Fores Tamayo

Reunite Migrant Families, Valerie Carlisle

Sisters of St Joseph, Brentwood NY Office of Justice, Susan WIlcox

Western Mass Jewish Activists for Immigration Justice, Annique Boomsma


Casey Miller

Rebecca Kaufman

Florence Selman

Elaine Cohen

Florence Harty

Daniel Gashler

Vielka Rivera Wambold

Martha Michael

Dora Galacatos

Steven Elworth

Nancy Kossman

Nancy Maclaine

Diane B. Sonde

Lawrence O’Neill

Jonathan Molofsky

Jacqueline Ndi Ntoko

Colleen O’Neill

Alice Ebenstein

Kathy Kojimoto

Emily Hill

Brad Munroe

John Taniel

Betty Forsberg

Michael Ostling

Sharon Altendorf

Teri Conrad

Marian Conrad

Pat Leach

Laura Clark

Linda Rowold-Brown

Mary Keller…..and more

Karen Fasimpaur

Barbara Reusch

Dorna Kightlinger

Bruce Tischler

Grace Goldstein

Rochelle Mackey

Gale Gordon, MD

Edward Kopas

Marsha Zell Anson

John and Johanna Will

Helen Demboski

Peggy Bernardy

Alice Levine

Mary Ortiz

Diane Paul

Jennie Spector

Gregory Nelson

Kim Perales

Sylvia Christy

John Brown

Barnett Cohen

Silvana Lee

Sarah Valeri

Michelle Noe

Sara Romes

Phyllis Willett

Bernadette Tourtual

Ilana Wallach

Alice Emery

Saurav Sarkar

Suzanne McCall

Wendy Brown

Orietta Lobo

Muriel Horowitz

Sherry Vaughn

Joni Davis

Linda Arnold

Emily Berger

Margaret Costello

Beverly Kaufman

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