President Joe Biden dramatically increased on Monday the US’s refugee admissions cap, setting the new limit at 62,500.
The new figure, which will run through the current fiscal year that ends in September, marks a four-fold increase from a record low established under former President Donald Trump who allowed a maximum of just 15,000 refugees to enter the US. Trump worked year after year to curtail refugee admissions after inheriting an entry cap of 110,000.
Biden sharply criticized his predecessor’s refugee policy, saying it “did not reflect America’s values as a nation that welcomes and supports refugees.”
“The new admissions cap will also reinforce efforts that are already underway to expand the United States’ capacity to admit refugees, so that we can reach the goal of 125,000 refugee admissions that I intend to set for the coming fiscal year,” he said in a statement.
“It is important to take this action today to remove any lingering doubt in the minds of refugees around the world who have suffered so much, and who are anxiously waiting for their new lives to begin,” he added.