US to sanction 4 countries for refusing to accept deported immigrants
The US Government will impose visa sanctions on four countries due to their refusal to take back deported immigrants. In reaching this decision, the spokesman of the Department of Homeland Security (“DHS”) said that all countries should begin to meet their obligations to repatriate their own citizen when the US tries to deport them. However, the spokesman refused to name the four countries.
The State Department and the DHS have the power to sanction countries that are uncooperative. In the past 16 years, such power has been used twice: against Guyana in 2001 and Gambia in 2016. Whilst in the past two cases, the State Department only stopped issuing visas to government officials and their families, it is uncertain the extent to which the State Department may impose the sanction on this occasion.
The U.S Immigration and Customs Enforcements have regularly kept a list of countries/jurisdictions that are considered to be uncooperative in deportation. Currently, 12 countries/jurisdictions are on the list, including: China, Hong Kong, Cuba, Vietnam, Laos, Iran, Cambodia, Myanmar, Morocco, South Sudan, Guinea and Eritrea.
If the US Government imposes visa sanctions against these 12 countries/jurisdictions, it may have a serious impact.