September 5, 2017 / 7:17 PM / a year ago

Obama says Trump immigration move 'cruel,' not 'required legally'

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Former President Barack Obama said on Tuesday the Trump administration’s decision to rescind a program Obama instituted to protect from deportation illegal immigrants who were brought to the United States as children was “cruel,” “self-defeating” and “wrong.”

Young DACA recipients, Mario, Melanie and Luis, watch U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions' announcement on the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, on a projection screen at the Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights of Los Angeles (CHIRLA) headquarters in Los Angeles, California, U.S., September 5, 2017. REUTERS/Monica Almeida

“Let’s be clear: the action taken today isn’t required legally,” Obama said in a post on Facebook. “It’s a political decision, and a moral question.”

“Whatever concerns or complaints Americans may have about immigration in general, we shouldn’t threaten the future of this group of young people who are here through no fault of their own, who pose no threat, who are not taking away anything from the rest of us,” he wrote.

Reporting by Makini Brice; Writing by David Alexander; Editing by Eric Beech

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