Canada narrows refugee eligibility
OTTAWA, July 24 (UPI) — Refugee claimants from five countries will no longer be welcome in Canada if entering from the United States, the Canadian government announced.
Immigration Minister Jason Kenney said claimants from Afghanistan, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Haiti, Iraq and Zimbabwe would be turned back if they tried to enter Canada from the United States, the Canwest News Service reported Friday.
The new rule would affect about 5,000 people each year, the government said.
The Conservative government is mandating people making refugee claims be required to seek protection in whichever of the two countries they enter first, be it Canada or the United States, the report said.
Earlier this week, the Czech Republic and Mexico filed diplomatic protests over Canada's new requirement their citizens have travel visas. The immigration department said there was a disproportionate number of travelers from those countries who sought refugee status.
Thursday's announcement also lifted a ban on deportations of immigrants to Burundi, Liberia and Rwanda, which would affect about 2,000 people, the report said.
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