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New letter decries continued rights violations by Border Patrol against Sikh migrants

A letter sent to Customs and Border Protection Commissioner Chris Magnus this week expresses greater urgency over alleged treatment of migrants at the border. Border Patrol agents in Arizona are accused of confiscating religious materials and other belongings. 

This follows reports from earlier this month detailing instances in Yuma where Sikh asylum seekers were being forced to remove their religious turbans by Border Patrol agents. Migrants also reported having personal documents like passports taken away. 

In the new letter, the Sikh Coalition and the American Civil Liberties Union say CBP has failed to take remedial action to stop the seizures. They also say Sikh detainees have been denied vegetarian meals in accordance with their religious practice. 

More than 160 rights and advocacy groups are signed onto the letter. It calls for transparency in the investigation into the accusations, and immediate action to stop them.

Alisa Reznick is a senior field correspondent covering stories across southern Arizona and the borderlands for the Tucson bureau of KJZZ's Fronteras Desk.