Iran says deeply concerned as UN releases report on migrants held in U.S.

April 28, 2020 - 16:45

TEHRAN — Iran has voiced concerns about a UN human rights report saying that 1500 migrants are in jeopardy in U.S. detention centers during the coronavirus pandemic.

“We raise a deep concern about @UNHumanRights report indicating 1500 #migrants are in jeopardy, as they're held in overcrowded & unsanitary detention center in America,” Iranian Foreign Ministry said it a tweet on Tuesday.

“The regime must be held accountable for poor treatment of migrants,” it said. “They are not offenders. Let them go!”

A UN human rights expert on Monday urged the U.S. government to stop detaining migrants who are being “held for processing” of their immigration claims in “overcrowded and unsanitary administrative centers,” citing concerns about the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

“It is very difficult to keep the necessary physical distance in overcrowded detention facilities,” Felipe González Morales, the UN special rapporteur on the human rights of migrants, said in statement. “Significantly reducing the number of detained migrants by releasing them into alternative settings can easily solve this.”

“None of those migrants are detained for criminal offenses, but are simply awaiting decisions on their immigration claims,” he added. “The authorities should assess the capacity of readily available alternatives measures in the country and elaborate a set of criteria to identify those in administrative detention that could be immediately released to alternative placements.”

Pointing to the U.S. government’s long track record—particularly under President Donald Trump—of ignoring the human rights of migrants, González Morales said that “alternatives to widespread immigration detention in the U.S. would also ensure that migrants are not arbitrarily detained.”

MH/PA

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