Over the weekend the Trump deportation initiative roared ahead in Detroit where as many as 40 Iraqi Christians were rounded up in ICE raids for deportation. The detainees are members of the city’s Chaldean community, members of one of the oldest branches of Christianity. Chaldeans have been among those facing persecution by terrorists and militias in Iraq. Hundreds of thousands have left the country.
ICE claims that those arrested have criminal records, although details have not been released by the agency. Judy Rabinovitz of the ACLU said that many of the court orders that ICE claimed to be enforcing were very old. “Anyone with a final order is basically vulnerable at this point. The problem is, these aren’t cases where these are people who pose a risk to public safety — it’s just sort of irrational, low-hanging fruit. Get the numbers, get people out.”
The Chaldean church is in communion with the Roman Catholic Church. Due to persecution, there are now more Chaldeans living in the United States than in Iraq.