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Vox Sentences: Internet down and protesters out in Iraq

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Migrant DNA collection program to expand; Iraqi protests met with force.

The Trump administration wants migrants’ DNA

A Border Patrol agent apprehends illegal immigrants shortly after they crossed the border from Mexico into the United States on Monday, March 26, 2018 in the Rio Grande Valley Sector near McAllen, Texas. Loren Elliott/AFP/Getty Images
  • The Trump administration plans to move forward with a program that collects and tests DNA from immigrants in federal detention, raising concerns about violations of privacy. [Vox / Nicole Narea]
  • A 2005 law requires federal law enforcement to collect DNA from all people in custody, but in 2010 Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano exempted people held in immigration detention. [Politico / Ted Hesson]
  • The new proposal would allow testing of data collected from any migrants under the purview of DHS. [NBC News / Daniella Silva]
  • After collecting the data, DHS would place DNA samples in an FBI criminal database. DNA tests could also be used to determine whether adult migrants traveling with children are actually the children’s parents. [Wall Street Journal / Michelle Hackman]
  • The plan raises concerns about privacy, both for immigrants and for American citizens who could wrongfully end up in custody. [The Verge / Zoe Schiffer]
  • ACLU lawyer Vera Eidelman denounced the plan: “mass collection alters the purpose of DNA collection from one of criminal investigation basically to population surveillance.” [NYT / Caitlin Dickerson]
  • While DNA collection is not invasive or complex in procedure, top Border Patrol officials warn that migrant processing at the border could be significantly slowed due to the new procedures. [The Guardian]

Iraqis protest unemployment and corruption

  • Anti-government protests in Iraq were broken up with bullets and tear gas, with 21 dead and over 200 injured so far. [AP / Qassim Abdul-Zahara]
  • Demonstrations that began early this week were spurred by unemployment, lack of public services, and Iranian influence in Iraq. [Al Jazeera]
  • While there have been protests against Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi’s government before, the current demonstrations’ timing and size pose the most serious challenge yet to his power. [NYT / Falih Hassan and Alissa J. Rubin]
  • As of Thursday, the government imposed a curfew and up to 75 percent of the country’s internet access is down. [Al Monitor / Ali Mamouri; CNET / Rae Hodge]



“An interesting strategy for lowering the trillion-dollar deficit: increase everyone’s need to drink to get through each day’s news, then tax the heck out of the good alcohol.” [Professor Jacob Levy of McGill University, tweeting about US tariffs on European goods]

Watch this: Impeachment is broken. Do it anyway.

Some reasons to impeach Trump, even if impeachment is a less-than-perfect solution. [YouTube / Ezra Klein]

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