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Judge in US blocks deportation of more than 100 Iraqis

Published: Updated:

A US district court judge in Michigan has temporarily blocked the deportations of more than 100 Iraqi nationals until a decision is reached over who has jurisdiction over the matter, according to court documents filed on Thursday.

Judge Mark Goldsmith issued an order staying the removal of the Iraqis convicted of various crimes after they argued they could face persecution or torture in Iraq because of their status as religious minorities, the documents say.

The US government has argued that under US law, the district court does not have jurisdiction over the case, which can only be reviewed by an appeals court.