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The Nation : Duarte Alien Plea Rejected

May 15, 1987

The State Department rejected a request by Salvadoran President Jose Napoleon Duarte that illegal immigrants from El Salvador be exempted from the Immigration Reform Act and allowed to remain in the United States. Duarte said the sudden forced return of 400,000 to 600,000 Salvadorans from the United States would create severe economic disruption and unemployment in his country. "While we are sensitive to the potential problems raised by President Duarte, we have not recommended that the attorney general grant" an exemption for the Salvadorans, State Department spokeswoman Phyllis Oakley said. She said the United States wanted to avoid granting any exceptions that other countries might use as precedents for similar requests.

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