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Canadian authorities intercept 21 crossing border

EMERSON, Man.--Canadian authorities intercepted 21 people crossing into Manitoba from northern North Dakota and Minnesota this weekend, continuing a trend of foreign nationals seeking refugee status in Canada.

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The Canadian side of the Canada-U.S border crossing is seen in Emerson, Manitoba, Canada on February 1, 2017. REUTERS/Lyle Stafford

EMERSON, Man.-Canadian authorities intercepted 21 people crossing into Manitoba from northern North Dakota and Minnesota this weekend, continuing a trend of foreign nationals seeking refugee status in Canada.

The Royal Canadian Mounted Patrol said it intercepted two groups of people crossing into Canada near Emerson directly north of Grand Forks on the Red River.

The first group of five people was discovered Friday. A second group of 16 individuals was intercepted Saturday morning.

"All of these individuals requested to make refugee claims and were taken to the Canada Border Services Agency port at Emerson so they could do so," the RCMP said in a news release.

Earlier this month, immigration specialists in Winnipeg told the Herald they have seen a surge of people who had been staying in the United States but were fleeing to Canada to seek refugee status. Most of those people are originally from Somalia, Ghana and Djibouti, according to Rita Chahal, executive director of the Manitoba Interfaith Immigration Council.

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Once in Canada, people have three days to file refugee claims.

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