Trudeau: Canada will continue to accept asylum seekers from US

Trudeau: Canada will continue to accept asylum seekers from US
© Greg Nash

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Canada will continue to take in asylum seekers from the United States, while promising additional steps to ensure the safety of Canadians.

"One of the reasons why Canada remains an open country is Canadians trust our immigration system and the integrity of our borders and the help we provide people who are looking for safety," Trudeau said on Tuesday, according to Reuters.

“We will continue to strike that balance between a rigorous system and accepting people who need help.”

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Canada has seen a rise in refugees crossing the border from the U.S. illegally in recent weeks amid growing fears of President Trump’s crackdown on illegal immigrants.

The number of people making refugee claims at the U.S. border with Quebec doubled from 137 in January 2016 to 452 last month, Reuters reported. Police in Canada have reportedly increased their presence at the border.

The Canadian government announced Tuesday that it had taken in 400 Yazidi refugees and survivors of Islamist extremism and plans to take in 800 more by the end of the year, a move that will cost $28 million.

President Trump’s initial immigration executive order last month temporarily halted entry into the U.S. for nationals from seven predominantly Muslim nations and suspended the U.S. refugee program for four months, while indefinitely barring Syrian refugees.

The Trump administration is expected to unveil a new version of the order aimed at preventing terrorism this week, after Trump's first order was blocked by a federal judge last month.