Know The Issue

Cambodian Repatriation Agreement

2002. Memorandum Between The Government Of The United States And The Royal Government Of Cambodia For The Establishment And Operation Of A United States – Cambodia Joint Commission On Repatriation

Vietnamese Repatriation Agreement

2008. Agreement Between The Government Of The United States Of America And The Government Of The Socialist Republic Of Vietnam On The Acceptance Of The Return Of Vietnamese Citizens

Detention to Deportation: Rethinking the Removal of Cambodian Refugees

Bill Ong Hing, 2005. The United States helped to pull Cambodia into the Vietnam War, initially through secret bombings in Cambodia in 1969 and CIA support for a rightist coup in Cambodia in 1970. After the Khmer Rouge genocide of two million of its own people in Cambodia, thousands of survivors fled to refugee camps. Eventually, the United States admitted 145,000 Cambodian refugees. U.S. resettlement policies provided public assistance and job training for low-income jobs. Refugee families, however, were not provided with the tools necessary to raise their children in inner-city environments, where crime was rampant and culture was radically different from where they came. As a result, many of the refugee children, products of their U.S. environment, have turned to crime. Until recently, the United States did not deport refugee criminals to countries like Cuba, Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia. In March 2002, however, the United States strong-armed Cambodia into signing a repatriation agreement and removed scores of the 1500 potential deportees of Cambodian nationality to a country that most never knew or left as infants. This Article challenges the moral basis for these deportations and asks whether justice is really being served. The removal of Cambodian refugees offers us an opportunity to rethink the entire concept of deportation and demands that we consider other options.

Removing Refugees U.S. Deportation Policy and The Cambodian-American Community

Walter Leitner International Human Rights Clinic, Returnee Integration Support Center, Deported Diaspora, 2010. The Cambodian-American community provides a valuable lens through which to explore the harsh effects of these laws and continued policies. In 2002, Cambodia signed a repatriation agreement to accept deportees from the United States. After serving time and reentering society, refugees and LPRs suddenly found themselves eligible for deportation. The U.S. separated them from their homes and families and sent them to a country with which they had little or no connection. As of September 2009, the U.S. has returned 212 such refugees to Cambodia.

Forced Apart: Families Separated and Immigrants Harmed by US Deportation Policy

Human Rights Watch, 2007. Not only have deportation laws become more punitive-increasing the types of crimes that can permanently sever an immigrant’s ties to the United States-but there are fewer ways for immigrants to appeal for leniency. Hearings that used to happen in which a judge would consider immigrants’ ties to the United States, most especially their family relationships, were stopped in 1996 for those convicted of a long list of crimes. There are no exceptions available, no matter how long an individual has lived in the United States and no matter how much his spouse and children depend on him for their livelihood and emotional support.

Statement of Support for Efforts to Assist Southeast Asian Americans in Danger of Deportation

National Asian Pacific American Bar Association, April 2012. WHEREAS, the enforcement of immigration law and policy is having a negative and detrimental effect on refugee groups, such as Asian Pacific American refugee groups, including, but not limited to, approximately 1,500 Cambodian residents and their families

Locked Up Far Away: The Transfer of Immigrants to Remote Detention Centers in the United States.

Human Rights Watch, 2009. Each year in the United States, several hundred thousand non-citizens are arrested and detained by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officials. They are held in a vast network of more than 300 detention facilities, located in nearly every state in the country. This report examines the scope and human rights impacts of US immigration transfers.

A Price Too High: US Families Torn Apart By Deportation For Drug Offenses

Human Rights Watch, 2015. The report documents how the US regularly places legal residents and other immigrants with strong ties to US families into deportation proceedings for drug offenses. Often, those offenses are decades old or so minor they resulted in little or no prison time. Deportations after convictions for drug possession in particular have spiked, increasing 43 percent from 2007 to 2012, according to US government data obtained by Human Rights Watch through a Freedom of Information Act request.