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U.S. unwinds Trump 'remain in Mexico' program

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A group of 25 asylum seekers crossed the border from Mexico into the United States on Friday.

They are the first to benefit from the Biden administration's rollback of one of former President Donald Trump's most restrictive immigration policies.

Trump's policy, known as the Migrant Protection Protocols, forced thousands of Central American migrants to wait in Mexico for months while their asylum applications were heard in immigration courts.

Most returned home but some stayed in Mexico living in sometimes squalid conditions, vulnerable to kidnapping and other violence.

Among them, Guatmealan migrant Juliana Ramirez:

"I feel very happy because I have been waiting here for more than a year. My son was born here in Ciudad Juarez."

On the campaign trail Biden pledged to immediately rescind Trump's policy.

The U.S. government has also expressed interest in funding flights that would bring back certain people who were blocked by Trump's measures.

The United Nations launched a website on Friday that allows migrants with active cases to register remotely to be processed at the U.S.-Mexico border.

Hundreds of people signed up hours after the website went live.

The U.S. state Department says in the coming week two additional ports of entry in Texas will be added.

It's hoped that 300 people a day will be processed at two of the ports.

UN Representative Mark Manly:

"We are asking people to not go to the border. To use these two virtual modalities to register so that they can be queued up and then be able to cross the border in an orderly fashion."

On day one of taking office in January, President Joe Biden began overturning Trump's hardline immigration policies.

He lifted a travel ban on 13 mostly Muslim-majority and African countries and halted the construction of the U.S.-Mexico border wall.

Video Transcript

- A group of 25 asylum seekers crossed the border from Mexico into the United States on Friday. They are the first to benefit from the Biden administration's rollback of one of former President Donald Trump's most restrictive immigration policies. Trump's policy, known as the Migrant Protection Protocols, forced thousands of Central American migrants to wait in Mexico for months while their asylum applications were heard in immigration courts.

Most returned home, but some stayed in Mexico living in sometimes squalid conditions, vulnerable to kidnapping and other violence. Now they'll be allowed into the US to wait for their cases to be heard. Guatemalan migrant Juliana Ramirez.

JULIANA RAMIREZ: [SPEAKING SPANISH]

INTERPRETER: I have been waiting here for more than a year. So I'm very happy. My son was born here in Ciudad Juarez.

- On the campaign trail, US President Joe Biden pledged to immediately rescind Trump's policy. The US government has also expressed interest in funding flights that would bring back certain people who were blocked by Trump's measures. The United Nations launched a website on Friday that allows migrants with active cases to register remotely to be processed at the US-Mexico border.

Hundreds of people signed up after the website went live. The US State Department says in the coming week two additional ports of entry in Texas will be added. It's hoped that 300 people a day will eventually be able to be processed at two of the ports. UN representative Mark Manly.

MARK MANLY: So we're asking people to not go to the border. To use these two virtual modalities to-- to register so that they can be cued up and then be able to cross the border in an orderly fashion.

- On day one of taking office in January, Biden began overturning Trump's hardline immigration policies. He lifted a travel ban on 13 mostly Muslim-majority and African countries and halted the construction of the US-Mexico border wall.