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Cablegate: Border Update - Canadian Immigration Digs Out Old

This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

UNCLAS MONTREAL 000204

SIPDIS

STATE FOR WHA/CAN AND PRM

E.0. 12958:N/A
TAGS: SMIG PREF KPAO PBTS KISL PGOV PREL CVIS CA CIC
SUBJECT: BORDER UPDATE - CANADIAN IMMIGRATION DIGS OUT OLD
REGULATION FROM THE MOTHBALLS

REF: SECSTATE MONTREAL 0004

1. SUMMARY: A LONG-STANDING CITIZENSHIP AND IMMIGRATION
CANADA (CIC) PRACTICE HAS CHANGED. ILLEGAL ALIENS WHO PREVIOUSLY
WOULD HAVE BEEN ADMITTED IMMEDIATELY INTO CANADA ARE NOW TURNED
OVER TO USINS UNTIL A CIC APPOINTMENT IS SCHEDULED. END SUMMARY.

2. STARTING IN LATE 2002, LARGE NUMBERS OF ILLEGAL ALIENS --
FORTY A DAY NON-STOP FOR A MONTH AT THE LACOLLE/CHAMPLAIN (N.Y.)
BORDER ALONE-- APPLIED FOR REFUGEE STATUS. CIC WAS FORCED TO
DOUBLE, SOMETIMES TRIPLE STAFF TO HANDLE THE LOAD OF INTERVIEWS.
HOWEVER, ONE OF POST'S CIC CONTACTS AT LACOLLE REPORTED THAT CIC
HEADQUARTERS NOTIFIED BORDER AGENTS ON JANUARY 30, 2003, TO
DIRECT THEM TO APPLY THE OLD BUT RARELY UTILIZED "DIRECT BACK"
REGULATION TO BETTER CONTROL THE FLOW OF REFUGEE CLAIMS. NOW,
INSTEAD OF INTERVIEWING REFUGEE SEEKERS ON THE SPOT, CIC
OFFICIALS GIVE REFUGEE SEEKERS AN APPOINTMENT FOR A LATER
INTERVIEW AND, IN THE INTERIM, RETURN REFUGEE SEEKERS TO USINS.

3. THE RECENT PROCEDURAL CHANGE REPORTEDLY HAS SLIGHTLY REDUCED
THE NUMBER OF CLAIMANTS WALKING UP TO THE BORDER, BUT A GOOD
NUMBER STILL APPEAR DAILY. FOR EXAMPLE, ON FEB 12, AT 07:45AM,
EIGHTEEN PAKISTANI CITIZENS ASKED TO FILE FOR REFUGEE STATUS AT
LACOLLE. WE WERE INFORMED THAT THE GROUP WAS TURNED BACK TO
USINS AND LATER DIRECTED TO SEEK ASSISTANCE AT THE PLATTSBURGH
SALVATION ARMY (SA).
ALLEN

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