U.S. will reunite only half of migrant children by Tuesday deadline

Trump admin releases names of children under 5 separated at border

A U.S. judge on Monday gave the government more time to reunite migrant children aged five or younger with their parents separated as a outcome of a "zero tolerance" policy, USA media reported.

Sabraw said on Monday he was "very encouraged with the progress" made so far, and ordered the government to provide a list by 6pm PT with the most current status on each of the individual cases. Puzzlingly, the administration had claimed on Friday that as many as 19 parents were deported, and argued that because they have been unable to make contact with them, they should not have to reunite them with their children under the court's injunction.

Gelernt added, however, that he believed the government had made "significant" steps in the past 48 hours to unite parents with their children, and he called the effort "a blueprint for going forward with the remaining more than 2,000 families". But on Monday, she said nine were removed from the United States and another nine were released here.

Sabraw had ordered the July 10 deadline in response to a lawsuit from the American Civil Liberties Union.

Sarah Fabian, a Justice Department lawyer, said that as of this weekend, there were 102 children under five who were still in government custody and separated from their parents.

Following domestic and global outcry over the separations, in which some children were kept in chain-link enclosures, Trump ended the practice on June 20. But, the lawyer says he's disappointed that not all children will see their parents.

At the hearing in San Diego, Judge Dana Sabraw gave the authorities extra time to determine which children will be back with their parents, as government lawyer Sarah Fabian said 54 of the youngsters could be returned to their parents by the Tuesday deadline, the USA media reports said.

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Fabian said the plan for Tuesday's reunions was for the children to be released to Immigration and Customs and Enforcement, which runs the adult detention centers where their parents are being held.

"The systems that are in place are absolutely not equipped to deal with this", Emily Kephart of the nonprofit Kids in Need of Defense told NPR's Nurith Aizenman last month.

Sabraw declined on Friday to grant the government an extension but indicated he might be willing to do so if officials provided the court and the ACLU with a detailed list of the children and status of their reunification.

The government has offered a variety of reasons why they can't reunite different families.

"ICE will assume custody and then release the parent and child together", she said. Yet in a disturbing investigation published Monday, BuzzFeed News has found that to not be the case, detailing the stories of several women who say they were ignored, roughly handled, shackled around the belly, and denied urgent medical care - even as they were miscarrying their children.

Additionally, Gelernt took issue with the Trump administration's claim that it has lost track both of parents who have been released by ICE within the USA pending their immigration or asylum hearings and at least nine parents who it deported without their children.

A number of children can not be released to their parents, either because the parents were released from custody into the United States or deported or because the parents are serving criminal sentences. That number is higher than other estimates presented by the government by up to 1,000 children. But as government employees would soon realize, they had their work cut out for them.

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