Refugees denied asylum in the U.S. are increasingly fleeing to Canada on foot after President Donald Trump’s election.
Canadian provinces that share a border with Minnesota and North Dakota have seen a surge in refugee applicants since April 2016.
“There has been an increase in illegal migration in Quebec, Manitoba and British Columbia, with the largest increase being seen in Quebec,” a spokesman for the Royal Mounted Police told The New York Times.
Canadian law stipulates that asylum seekers cannot simply show up at the border, so they must make their way illegally into Canada. A Somali man who fled to San Diego in 2013 before being denied asylum, illegally crossed through the border to arrive in Canada and request asylum. “I knew Trump was going to deport me,” he lamented to The NYT.
Canadian authorities say illegal migration has increased by 500 percent since 2015 in Quebec province alone. The reported November 2016 tally of illegal migrants was higher than 2015’s entire total of illegal arrivals in the province of Quebec.
Canada grants approximately 60 percent of the refugee asylum requests annually, and requires refugees awaiting a hearing to remain in a detention center. Refugees from terror-rife countries like Syria are admitted at an even higher percentile.
“We have clients who openly tell us that after the declaration of Trump that he was going to crack down on illegal immigration, that he was going to go after people from certain countries, they left the United States to come to Canada and seek refugee status,” a Montreal immigration lawyer told the Toronto Star.