Only 264 of 2,500 migrant children reunited with families

About 14 percent of children aged 5-17 reunited, US says

The Trump administration reported to a California federal judge on Friday afternoon that as of 7 a.m. that morning, 450 of the 2,551 migrant children older than age 5 who were taken from their parents have been reunited.

The 364 families who have already been reunited have celebrated being together again, but remain tired of the future under the "zero tolerance" policy.

The government has six more days to comply with the reunification order by the USA district judge Dana Sabraw, who summoned the government attorneys to appear in his San Diego courtroom on Friday to account for progress. A big block will reunified in a timely manner.

U.S. District Judge Dana Sabraw, who previously took the government to task for missing reunification deadlines and making disingenuous arguments about the children's welfare, gushed over the "great progress" made so far. "During the HHS interview, a number of them have said no [to reunification]", Flentje asserted on Friday. He set an earlier deadline of July 10 for dozens of children under 5.

Migrant families from Mexico, fleeing from violence, listen to officers of the US Customs and Border Protection before entering the United States to apply for asylum at Paso del Norte global border crossing bridge in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico June 20, 2018.

Almost 850 parents had been interviewed and cleared for reunification as of Thursday and another 229 parents had been deemed ineligible because of criminal records, or because they "waived" reunification or for other reasons, the report said.

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That could leave hundreds of children in limbo, presumably at Health and Human Services' detention center, by the court-ordered deadline on July 26.

More than 850 parents are facing final deportation orders, government lawyers told the court on Friday.

Sabraw has temporarily barred deportations of reunified families pending a final decision.

The immigrant families were separated at the border as a result of the Trump administration's "zero tolerance" immigration policy, which called for prosecuting all adults who illegally cross the border. The president ordered the practice stopped on 20 June.

The government said that in the coming days it will provide various lists of parents and children to plaintiffs in the case but admitted they're "still determining" whether they can provide a list of parents in criminal custody.

After several testy exchanges in hearings and court papers, Sabraw said on Monday he felt that the government was finally emphasizing family reunification over lengthy procedures such as DNA testing and background checks on parents.



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