The Trump administration is reportedly planning to end protections that have allowed Vietnam War refugees to stay in the US for decades.
A spokesperson for the U.S. Embassy in Hanoi told The Atlantic for a story published Wednesday that the administration has unilaterally reinterpreted a 2008 agreement between Vietnam and the U.S. under the Bush administration, in order to pursue deportation for certain Vietnamese immigrants who arrived in the U.S. before 1995.
The agreement reads:
Vietnamese citizens are not subject to return to Vietnam under this Agreement if they arrived in the United States before July 12, 1995, the date on which diplomatic relations were re-established between the U.S. A 1111 Government and the Vietnamese Government.
According to the spokesperson, the Trump administration now believes that those immigrants who arrived before 1995 are now eligible for deportation should the government have a reason to begin such deportation procedures.
“The United States and Vietnam signed a bilateral agreement on removals in 2008 that establishes procedures for deporting Vietnamese citizens who arrived in the United States after July 12, 1995, and are subject to final orders of removal,” the spokesperson told the news outlet.
“While the procedures associated with this specific agreement do not apply to Vietnamese citizens who arrived in the United States before July 12, 1995, it does not explicitly preclude the removal of pre-1995 cases.”