The Trump administration has been aggressively deporting foreign nationals home around the globe, from Somalia to Slovakia. Though Mexicans, Central Americans and Haitians make up 9 out of 10 people removed from the United States, year-end figures analyzed by NPR show that deportations to the rest of the world have jumped 24 percent.
Some are from formerly “recalcitrant” countries that used to reject U.S. deportees but have now agreed to take them home. These nations include Guinea, Cuba, Bangladesh, Iraq, Vietnam and Afghanistan. Moreover, agents with Immigration and Customs Enforcement, or ICE, are arresting more immigrants in the interior of the U.S. who have overstayed their visas.
A case in point — the unauthorized Irish in Boston.
“It’s really indiscriminate. ICE, in their aggressive tactics of detention, are going after the Irish as much as they’re going after any other nationality,” says Ronnie Millar, director of the Irish International Immigrant Center in Boston.
Sitting in the visiting room of the Suffolk County House of Corrections, Dylan O'Riordan, 19, wears a lemon-yellow jail jumpsuit and a bewildered expression on his pale face.
“I was aware how with Trump immigration was going to get a lot harder, but I didn’t pay as much mind to it as I should have, which was my first mistake,” he says.
Photo: John Burnett/NPR
Caption: Dylan O'Riordan, 19, has been detained by Immigration Customs and Enforcement for four months and is scheduled to be put on a plane to Dublin later this week.