OTTAWA – When the Trump administration issued an immigration ban on citizens of seven majority Muslim countries a year ago, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau sent out an unambiguous tweet about Canada’s stance on refugees and asylum seekers.
“To those fleeing persecution, terror and war, Canadians will welcome you, regardless of your faith. Diversity is our strength,” Trudeau wrote on Jan. 28.
But when U.S. Homeland Security announced this week that it was withdrawing Temporary Protected Status, or TPS, for 200,000 Salvadorans, giving them 18 months to sort out their immigration status permanently or face deportation, the reaction from the Canadian government was more muted.
Fearing an influx of newcomers crossing “irregularly” into Canada from the United States, the Canadian government has embarked on an information campaign to discourage Salvadorans from trekking north, as thousands of Haitians did when threatened with a loss of protected status last summer.