The Washington Post broke the story two days before Christmas -- US immigration authorities are planning raids in coming months to round up Central American families and deport them:
The Department of Homeland Security has begun preparing for a series of raids that would target for deportation hundreds of families who have flocked to the United States since the start of last year, according to people familiar with the operation.
The nationwide campaign, to be carried out by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents as soon as early January, would be the first large-scale effort to deport families who have fled violence in Central America, those familiar with the plan said. More than 100,000 families with both adults and children have made the journey across the southwest border since last year, though this migration has largely been overshadowed by a related surge of unaccompanied minors.
The ICE operation would target only adults and children who have already been ordered removed from the United States by an immigration judge, according to officials familiar with the undertaking, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because planning is ongoing and the operation has not been given final approval by DHS. The adults and children would be detained wherever they can be found and immediately deported. The number targeted is expected to be in the hundreds and possibly greater.The government of El Salvador expressed its worry and called the deportation round-up plans lamentable, and a failure to address long term causes of migration. Salvadoran consulates were placed on an emergency footing to assist its citizens.
Democratic candidates for president, Bernie Sanders and Martin O'Malley, both spoke out against the plan. A statement from the church-based Sanctuary Movement indicated that houses of worship in the movement were willing to provide refuge to families facing deportation.
Rates of attempted migration from El Salvador remain high as families flee violence and poverty.