BY INGRID QUIROZ
Salt Lake City--Róger Calero, associate director of the socialist magazine Perspectiva Mundial, was in Salt Lake City to call to the attention of students at the University of Utah and members of the community as a whole, his fight against his probable deportation stemming from his arrest in December 2002 in Houston, when he was returning from reporting assignments in Cuba and Mexico.
Calero gave an interview with La Prensa, pointing out that his case is not unique, that there are thousands of workers affected by the immigration system. Calero, who has been a U.S. resident for 17 years and is of Nicaraguan origin, is demanding that the Immigration and Naturalization Service, now known as the Department of National Security, restore his rights as a resident.
As part of the national campaign, demanding: Stop to the deportation of Róger Calero, his goal is to visit 21 cities before his hearing, and Calero confirmed that the purpose of his visit to Salt Lake was also to support those defending workers’ living conditions, as in the case of the copper miners at Kennecott who went out on strike at the time of his visit.
His tour has now reached 17 cities and he expects to visit the four remaining cities before March 25, when he has a hearing with the immigration authorities in Newark, New Jersey, where he lives.
According to Calero, the reason given by the INS for his arrest is based on a conviction for sale of marijuana which occurred 14 years ago when he was a high school student, a charge waived by the INS when it granted his permanent residency in 1990.
Calero attributes his arrest to the intimidation that the immigration service is carrying out broadly with arbitrary arrests since the fateful morning of September 11, and gave as an example the arbitrary arrest of workers from Orem on February 20.
In spite of having lived in the United States for nearly two decades, Calero admitted a bit pensively, that he did not become a citizen out of "pure procrastination," a fact which he "does not regret," and rejects the idea that immigrants could be denied the constitutional right to adjust their legal status in this country.
Birmingham: Calero gains support for fight against deportation
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