ICE attempted to fly ninety-two Somali illegals Thursday under orders of deportation but the plane never reached its destination. The flight was forced to re-route to the West African country of Senegal after facing "logistical problems."
The 5,000-mile backtrack was an unexpected detour for the ninety-two illegals, some of whom lived in the United States for decades. The Somali citizens were living in the United States illegally for years and did not enter the country with the required documentation.
In the weeks leading up to the flight, dozens of Somali citizens who were in U.S. illegally were rounded up from their homes in Minnesota and transported to Louisiana to be flown back to Somali. A few were able to secure stays of removal with the help of lawyers but many were taken without notice and unable to secure stays of removal.
The flight only made it as far as Senegal's capital of Dakar according to an emailed statement on Friday from the United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement. In the email, it said the agency was notified that a relief flight crew was "unable to get sufficient crew rest due to issues with their hotel in Dakar."
The email also said that "various logistical options were explored, and ultimately ICE decided to reschedule the mission to Somalia and return to the United States with all 92 detainees."
It is probably not a coincidence that Somalia is a place overcome with war, famine, and disease that have killed off hundreds of thousands since the central governments collapse in 1991. Militant groups such as Shabab, an Islamic terror group, are still actively carrying devastating attacks against the countries people.
In October, a pair of trucks exploded killing hundreds of people in one of the capital city of Mogadishu's busiest streets. The bombing was the worst attack the city experienced in decades. Kim Hunter is a lawyer representing one of the illegals on the flight and she says it makes no sense to send her clients back to a war zone.
"The security situation is abysmal,” Hunter said. "I, apparently, was naive because I actually believed that following the Oct. 14 bombing, this flight might be suspended."
Hunter also expressed her thoughts on what the flight turning around reveals, "We’re inclined to think that this sort of failed flight reflects on the fact that more deportations are being carried out in haste and are perhaps not as well-planned as they might have been previously."
The United States is deporting more Somali citizens that previous years going back to 2014. That year 65 Somali citizens were removed, the next year 120 and 198 after that. So far in 2017, 521 Somali citizens were deported according to ICE reports.
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