UN refugee agency chief concerned about U.S. asylum system changes

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GENEVA, July 10 (Xinhua) — UN High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi on Thursday expressed concern over the planned changes to the asylum system in the United States.

“We are worried that the proposed Procedures for Asylum and Withholding of Removal, Credible Fear and Reasonable Fear Review, currently being circulated for public comment, mark a departure from humanitarian policies and practices long championed by the United States and rooted in international law,” Grandi said in a statement.

The statement said that the changes contained in the pending regulation, combined with separate restrictions enacted in recent years, would mean that many people fleeing persecution would be unable to request, or obtain, protection in the United States.

“The obligation to provide a safe haven to those fleeing armed conflict, violence or persecution reflects fundamental values rooted in many legal traditions, and is a core aspect of modern international law,” it said.

“We have urged our interlocutors in the government of the United States — and in all governments around the world — to keep this in mind as they decide what policy decisions are appropriate,” said the statement. Enditem

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