FOREIGN Affairs on Tuesday downplayed United States President-elect Donald Trump’s announcement he would be cracking down on illegal immigrants and said it did not expect a “calamitous impact” from it.
In a statement, Foreign Affairs spokesman Charles Jose said the three-million Filipinos who had emigrated to the US “have legal residency or citizenship status” and were paying their taxes and obeying American law.
“We do not expect President-elect Trump’s immigration pronouncements to have a calamitous impact on the Filipino community there,” Jose said.
He made his statement even as the Labor Department also downplayed the possible displacement of thousands of Filipino workers in the United States.
Trump had promised to deport two- to three-million illegal immigrants once he assumes office next year.
The department said there were nearly four-million Filipinos living and working in the US who accounted for about a third of all the Filipinos abroad.
On Monday, Trump said he would be deporting millions of undocumented migrants.
“What we are going to do is get the people that are criminal and have criminal records, gang members, drug dealers, where a lot of these people, probably two million, it could be even three million”•we are getting them out of our country or we are going to incarcerate,” Trump said in an excerpt released ahead of broadcast by CBS’s 60 Minutes program.
The billionaire real estate tycoon also made security at the US-Mexico border a central plank of his presidential campaign that resulted in his shock election victory against his Democratic rival Hillary Clinton.
Trump had promised to build a wall on the US border with Mexico and said it might not consist entirely of brick and mortar but also fences in some areas.
“There could be some fencing,” Trump said in his first prime-time interview since being elected president.
“But [for] certain areas, a wall is more appropriate. I’m very good at this, it’s called construction.”