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Demonstrators protest ICE in downtown Seattle

Hundreds of people protested Immigration and Customs Enforcement outside the Federal Building in downtown Seattle as the clock ticks down on a court-imposed deadline to reunite thousands of children and parents who were forced apart at the U.S.-Mexico border.

RELATED: Deadline looms for reuniting families separated at border

Protesters on Second Avenue demanded the end of criminalization of refugees and immigrants. “Stop the detention of refugees and end the deportations; Abolish ICE and stop the workplace raids; Legalization for all undocumented immigrants.”

“Like so many people, I’m obviously appalled at separating of children from their parents,” Vendana Whitney told KIRO Radio.

“We have zero for this administration’s zero tolerance of immigration. It is a violation of human rights and it is just wrong,” Isaac Organista said.

He said protesters were willing to get arrested to show how wrong the separation of families is.

Seattle Councilmember Kshama Sawant said her office is “honored to stand alongside the National Domestic Workers Alliance and Casa Latina at this protest!” Councilmember Teresa Mosqueda was also in attendance.

Authorities have identified 2,551 children 5 and older who may be covered by the order to be reunited with their parents by the deadline. That effort was expected to fall short, partly because hundreds of parents may have already been deported without their children.

But, by focusing only those deemed by the government to be “eligible” for reunification, authorities are expected to claim success.

As of Tuesday, there were 1,012 parents reunified with their children in U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement custody. Hundreds more had been cleared and were just waiting on transportation.

According to the event’s Facebook page, 99 people will attend the protest and another couple hundred people are interested in going.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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