Delaware prepares for possible arrival of planes carrying migrants from Texas

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GEORGETOWN, Del. (UKTN) — The state of Delaware is preparing for the arrival of a plane carrying migrants. It is an escalation of a new Republican strategy of sending asylum seekers to Democratic strongholds without any warning.

Such transfers raise many controversies. Republicans say it is shifting care to refuges that are friendly to immigrants. Democrats say it’s political theater and criticize it as inhumane.

A plane carrying migrants from Texas, believed to be mostly Venezuelans, is reportedly headed for Delaware, but it won’t arrive Tuesday as expected.

Among those ready to help is Casa de Venezuela Greater Philadelphia Vice President Rossana Arteaga-Lopenza.

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“I just think it’s really sad that we use human lives as a political stunt,” said Arteaga-Lopenza. “It must be sad. We are being manipulated into moving for the convenience of their political gain.”

Last week, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis sent a plane carrying migrants to Martha’s Vineyard.

The Bexar County Sheriff in Texas is investigating whether that was a crime.

Some migrants claim they were misled with false promises of housing and jobs.

“The people of Delaware welcome visitors to their state,” said Diane Batchik, a national board member of Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Services. “They’re a welcoming community and there’s already a strong immigrant presence here, so they chose poorly.”

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The office of Delaware Governor John Carney says it has not received notification from Florida or Texas governors that migrants are coming, but says the state will not refuse the migrants.

“We are ready to meet their immediate needs: housing, shelter, do they need medical care? Transportation, food,” said Jill Fredel, communications director for the Delaware Department of Health and Social Services. “We are prepared to meet all those needs, and we will do so for as long as it takes.”

While it is unknown who is flying the plane, immigration rights groups say the flight raises legal and ethical questions.

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“Stop it, stop now. These are people,’ Batchik said. “These are people. We all came from somewhere.”

The migrants were scheduled to arrive Thursday afternoon at Delaware Coastal Airport, 32 miles away from President Joe Biden’s beach house, but the flight has been delayed. Now there is no word when it will arrive.

UKTN Philadelphia has reached out to Texas and Florida governors for comment and is still awaiting a response.

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