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First group of refugees heads from Pacific camps to U.S. under deal Trump slammed as 'dumb'

 (Refugee Action Coalition / AFP-Getty Images)
(Refugee Action Coalition / AFP-Getty Images)

The first refugees accepted under a contentious agreement with Australia are headed to the United States, months after President Trump assailed the deal as “dumb” and not in the country’s best interests.

Fifty-four asylum-seeking refugees left Pacific island camps this week where Australia had housed them for several years. Some came from an all-male camp in Papua New Guinea’s Manus Island, while the others came from a camp on the island of Nauru, a U.S. State Department official said on Thursday. A number of advocacy groups have said the refugees are set to settle in cities from Los Angeles to Atlanta.

The resettlement of the refugees, mostly men from countries such as Iran, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iraq and Somalia, is part of a deal forged between the United States and Australia under the Obama administration.

Under the agreement, about 1,250 refugees who have been refused entry to Australia and are housed in offshore detention centers will be accepted by the U.S. 

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