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Detainees threaten self-harm in New Mexico detention center

October 25, 2019 GMT

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Immigrant advocates and lawyers in New Mexico say multiple asylum-seekers from Cuba have tried to kill themselves and staged sit-ins after being detained by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

The Albuquerque Journal reported Thursday that 32-year-old Iosnaiqui Acosta-Columbie told the Journal that he has taken dramatic measures like cutting himself after he says he endured beatings by police and escaped the “dictatorship” to seek asylum in the U.S.

Lawyers in touch with detainees say three Cubans have tried to kill themselves this month.

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ICE officials have also confirmed two self-harm incidents involving men this month.

Asylum-seekers in a detention center in Otero County have said they are deprived of their liberty for up to nine months and have requested their release.

The Otero County site has more than 1,000 inmates.

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Information from: Albuquerque Journal, http://www.abqjournal.com