Friday, March 4, 2011

Three-year old at the center of illegal immigration debate

El Paso (CNN) -- It has been 3 months since 97 immigrants emerged from a tunnel between El Paso and Juarez to seek asylum in the United States. Today, immigration officials announced that while 35 of the immigrants had been granted asylum, the rest had their applications denied. Of particular interest is the case of Adriana Hernandez, a three-year old girl who is the daughter of a notorious drug smuggler in Juarez. Her nanny, Cecilia, snuck her away in the dead of night in hopes that she would not be exposed to her father’s criminal behaviour. Her father, Santiago, has declared war with the Border Patrol until his daughter was returned to his custody. Adriana’s mother, divorced from her father, also wants her daughter back in Mexico. However, while Adriana’s application for asylum (filed on her behalf by her aunt) was granted, her nanny’s application was not as she was not a legal caregiver or family member. Members of Congress are sharply divided on the issue, with some believing that all 97 immigrants should be deported and others wanting asylum for them all.

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