Members of the local community and elected officials were very disappointed in the recent news that Quince Orchard High School graduate Lizandro Claros Saravia and his brother Diego were detained and deported back to his home country of El Salvador.
Lizandro is an outstanding soccer player who had earned a scholarship to play at Louisburg College. He was just a few days away from moving in when immigration officials announced they were going to detain the brothers immediately.
The two brothers came to the United States in 2009, and had won a stay of removal in 2013. But since then, the Claros Saravia brothers were unable to have their applications to stay of deportation approved.
“I am shocked and dismayed,” said Montgomery County Executive Ike Leggett on the deportation of the Claros Saravia brothers.
The two were sent back to El Salvador on Aug. 2.
“Instead of focusing ICE resources on those who have committed serious crimes, ICE instead has deported a young man, along with his brother, who by all accounts was talented and hard-working,” Leggett said. “He fled violence in his native land in search of safety and opportunity in Montgomery County. He found it. But now ICE has sent him right back. This makes zero sense. ICE should be ashamed of itself.”
Many officials have spoken out against this decision by ICE. Maryland Senator Chris Van Hollen tweeted, “We should be focused on MS-13, not scholarship winners.”
“The deportation of the Claros Saravia brothers is a tragic situation and a waste of public resources,” County Councilmember Mark Elrich said. “Our tax dollars should not have been used to find these young people and send them away from our country, where they worked and studied and were a part of our community.
“This is more clear evidence that the regime of this President is guided by no other purpose than hate,” Elrich continued. “This move does not make us safer; instead, it jeopardizes our safety.”
The two brothers lived in Gaithersburg, which is one of the most diverse cities in the country.
“The City of Gaithersburg is one of the most diverse cities in America,” the Gaithersburg City Hall website reads. “We are committed to welcoming, embracing and protecting all who choose to call this place their home.”