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Biden to issue executive order to build up US capacity to accept refugees

Published: Updated:

White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan said on Thursday that President Joe Biden will issue an executive order to build up the U.S. capacity to accept refugees, but the timing of the action remains unclear.

At a White House briefing, Sullivan also told reporters that Biden will issue an memorandum of understanding on LGBTQ rights around the world.

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White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said later in the briefing that she did not expect Biden to issue the order on Thursday, but that Biden is "committed to looking for ways to ensure more refugees are welcomed into the United States."

Biden is expected to take steps to restore the United States' historic role as a country that welcomes refugees from around the world after four years of cuts to admissions under Trump. The U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) estimates there are 1.4 million refugees worldwide in urgent need of resettlement.

During his four years in office, Trump portrayed refugees as a security threat and a drain on U.S. communities as he took a series of measures to restrict legal migration to the United States.

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