More than 100 people become US citizens in Rockland
More than 100 people in Rockland County became U.S. citizens on Friday.
A total of 128 people from 41 countries became U.S. citizens in Pomona. Officials say Rockland County is one of the fastest growing areas, with approximately 900 people becoming U.S. citizens each year.
Some that became citizens on Friday are from Guatemala and Mexico. Edgar Aguilar fled Guatemala with his mother when he was 16, crossing the U.S.- Mexico border illegally more than 20 years ago. The Suffern resident says he lived in Rockland County for years, as an undocumented citizen, before he got married.
Even with his green card, Aguilar says he’s lived in fear of being deported every single day.
“When you have family here, it's not easy,” Aguilar says. “You don't want to leave everyone behind.”
Aguilar added he doesn't agree with President Donald Trump's new deal to send immigrants seeking asylum in the U.S. to Guatemala instead.
“It's not going to be safe,” Aguilar says. “Now you're going to have people from all over the world in that country.”
President Trump's asylum deal with Guatemala is unpopular with many politicians and human rights advocates, who report that the country consistently ranks as one of the most dangerous in the world.