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More Than 800 Refugees Receive Waivers To Come To U.S. This Week

Christina Ulsh
KERA News special contributor
This group of children came to Dallas as refugees. Here they are on the first day of school in 2014.

Federal officials have granted waivers to 872 refugees to enter the U.S. this week. Refugee Services of Texas says Thursday is the last day they will be able to arrive through the U.S. Refugee Admissions Program. 

The refugees are not from the seven countries temporarily banned under President Donald Trump’s executive order on immigration.

The resettlement agency says the refugees were already in transit and had been cleared before the travel ban took effect.

Of the 800-plus refugees being admitted, 55 of them are arriving in Texas. They come from the countries Afghanistan, Burundi, Democratic Republic of Congo, Eritrea and Rwanda.

More than 2,100 refugees had been scheduled to arrive in the U.S this week, but nearly half of them were denied resettlement.

Refugee Services of Texas says tomorrow is the last day refugees will arrive through the U.S. Refugee Admissions Program. Under Trump’s order, the program will be suspended for 120 days.

Stella M. Chávez is KERA’s immigration/demographics reporter/blogger. Her journalism roots run deep: She spent a decade and a half in newspapers – including seven years at The Dallas Morning News, where she covered education and won the Livingston Award for National Reporting, which is given annually to the best journalists across the country under age 35.