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World Refugee Day Tops Week’s Immigration News

Editor’s note: Here is a look at immigration-related news around the U.S. this week. Questions? Tips? Comments? Email the VOA immigration team:

World Refugee Day

The Inside Story

This week on The Inside Story, World Refugee Day, we explore the complicated processes refugees face around the world and hear inspiring stories from refugees seeking asylum from countries like Ukraine, Afghanistan and Sudan.

Refugee or Asylum-Seeker in the US: What’s the Difference?

World Refugee Day, celebrated around the world every June 20, serves as a day to pay tribute to people who have been compelled to flee their homes. Those who leave their countries seeking safety are known as refugees or asylum-seekers. While the terms are often used interchangeably, in the United States there are significant differences under immigration law when pursuing these statuses. Immigration reporter Aline Barros has the story.

Supreme Court Allows Biden Policy to Take Effect Focusing Deportations on Public Safety Risks

The Supreme Court said Friday it will no longer stand in the way of a long-blocked Biden administration policy to prioritize the deportation of immigrants who are deemed to pose the greatest public safety risk or were picked up at the border. The Associated Press reports.

Former Somali Refugee Turns Reclaimed Life Jackets Into Fashion

One former refugee turned entrepreneur has sought to turn the refugees’ stories into something inspiring that empowers others who have fled their homes. Mohamed Malim, 27, is the director of the fashion apparel brand Epimonia, a small Minnesota-based company that he founded in 2018. Story by Mohamed Olad Hassan.

US Supreme Court Upholds Law Against Encouraging Illegal Immigration

A federal law that makes it a crime for a person to encourage illegal immigration does not violate constitutional free speech protections, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled on Friday in upholding the decades-old measure defended by President Joe Biden’s administration. Reuters reports.

Immigration around the world

VOA60 Africa – Amnesty International Accuses Spain, Morocco of Covering Up Racist Border Practices

Amnesty International on Friday accused Spain and Morocco of a cover-up for failing to properly investigate events at the border of the Spanish enclave of Melilla last year, when tens of migrants and refugees died during a mass attempted crossing.

Disabled Syrian Refugee Dreams of Paralympics Glory

Some of the Syrian refugees taken in by Spain have accomplished big things, including Adnan Almousa Alfermli. His eyes are set on winning a gold medal at the Paralympics. Miguel Amaya narrates this report from Alfonso Beato in Barcelona. Camera: Alfonso Beato.

External Pressures Increasing Suicide Risk at Refugee Settlement in Uganda

Palorinya refugee settlement in Uganda is reporting high numbers of suicides and suicide attempts by the people who live there. Organizations and individuals who work with the refugees say denial of food and a failure to meet basic needs are the main causes. Halima Athumani reports from Obongi District, Uganda. Camera: Francis Mukasa

Frustration Growing Among Young Palestinians at Refugee Camps

The U.N. classifies more than 900,000 Palestinians living in the West Bank as refugees, meaning they or more often their parents or grandparents were displaced from their homes in what became the State of Israel in 1948. About a quarter of them live in refugee camps that are crowded and poor and have frequently been the scene of clashes with Israeli soldiers. VOA visited the Balata refugee camp in the northern West Bank and filed this report. Camera: Ricki Rosen

Escaping Conflict, Ukraine’s Refugee Women Go It Alone

The U.N. says that among 8 million refugees who have fled the war in Ukraine, 90% are women and children. With martial law prohibiting most men from leaving the country, many of Ukraine’s women who go abroad have no choice but to take care of their families alone. As part of VOA World Refugee Day coverage, Warsaw reporter Lesia Bakalets heard from some of the women who have taken refuge in Poland. VOA footage by Daniil Batushchak.

Refugees in Kenya Pursue Entrepreneurship Amid UNHCR Funding Shortfall

More than a half-million refugees in Kenya will not receive assistance from the U.N. refugee agency because of a lack of funding. Amid the tough conditions, a refugee-led organization in Nairobi — Youth Voices Community — is helping thousands of refugees through education in business and learning new skills to earn a living. Mohammed Yusuf reports.

News in brief

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas said in a statement that he applauded the Supreme Court’s ruling on immigration enforcement.

“DHS looks forward to reinstituting these Guidelines, which had been effectively applied by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officers to focus limited resources and enforcement actions on those who pose a threat to our national security, public safety, and border security. The Guidelines enable DHS to most effectively accomplish its law enforcement mission with the authorities and resources provided by Congress.”

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