Hearing today on whether to indefinitely suspend Iraqi deportations


A key hearing is scheduled in federal court Friday that could determine the future of hundreds of Iraqi detainees awaiting deportation.

A judge will hear arguments about whether to indefinitely suspend the deportations, which have been delayed twice already.

Many of the people in question are here legally but have past criminal convictions.

The detained Iraqi nationals would be loaded onto a plane and then delivered back to Iraq. Many of the detained immigrants are Chaldeans.

They're also Christians. Their families fear that if they're deported, they'll be tortured or killed.

Hundreds of Iraqis were picked up in an ICE raid around Metro Detroit last month as part of a nationwide sweep.

Family members were hysterical as they watched their loved ones being taken away, not knowing when or if they'll see them again.

The deportation has been blocked by the federal judge until at least July 24.

Families argue they were convicted of non-violent crimes and many were committed decades ago.

The government says 1,400 Iraqis are under deportation orders nationwide. Most are not in custody.

A spokesperson for ICE said the removal of those individuals is a result of recent negotiations between the US and Iraq.

Those with ICE also say that the arrests are part of a backlog and the Iraqi individuals involved have been convicted of crimes including homicide, rape, sexual assault, drugs, robbery, kidnapping and other offenses:

They released the following statement:

"ICE regularly conducts targeted enforcement operations during which additional resources and personnel are dedicated to apprehending removable aliens. All enforcement activities are conducted with the same level of professionalism and respect that ICE officers exhibit every day. The focus of these targeted enforcement operations is consistent with the routine, targeted arrests carried out by ICE's Fugitive Operations Teams on a daily basis."

ICE will not confirm an operation prior to its completion, nor will ICE speculate on future operational activities."

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