Illegal Immigrants on an Island? You Betcha!

Guam is located approximately 6,000 miles from San Francisco, CA; 3,800 miles west of Honolulu, HI; 1,500 south of Japan; and 1596 miles east of the Philippines. Because of  Guam’s isolated location in Western Pacific, you would think that this tiny island would not have a problem with illegal immigration, but you would be wrong.  Many refugees from the Asian continent mistakenly think that Guam might be a somewhat convenient backdoor into the United States and they see Guam as one small step for man that leads to one giant step to the U.S. mainland. Most fly into Guam with temporary or tourist visas and never return, putting them in an overstay status while maintaining hopes of becoming permanent residents. Unfortunately for the majority, it does not work out that way. Entering Guam illegally or with the overt reason of seeking asylum is likely to end up as a dead-end nightmare and nothing at all like the dream of being greeted by open arms in the United States.  It has been estimated that there are about 2,500 illegal residents on Guam. Those who are caught are usually interred in a detention center awaiting either deportation or asylum hearings, which can take up to two years for a single case to be heard.

Guam is an island territory of the United States located 900 miles north of the equator in the Western Pacific. Guam is four to eight miles wide and 32 miles long and is the largest of the Micronesian islands. Guam’s lush tropical terrain along with urban areas within the island covers about 220 sq. miles and is the southernmost island in the Mariana Island chain. It is the 32nd largest island of the United States. The capital city of Guam is Hagatna (formarly Agana).  It is also the closest land mass to the Mariana Trench, which is the deepest part of the world (Challenger Deep).

Because of its western location from the International Date Line (180th meridian), Guam is the first to experience the new day in the United States; hence Guam is “Where America’s Day Begins.”

Guam as seen from Nasa’s Earth Observatory

Thanks to NASA’s Earth Observatory for the awesome shot of Guam from above.

About the author: livinginthepacific

Stishit Early Adopter. Enjoying life in the "Domain of the Golden Dragon." Blogger, Vlogger, Social Media Marketing consultant. Check out my personal blog (website) and YouTube channel for a slice of life in the Western Pacific - From Guam to the Philippines... "One Day at a Time!"


Very informative. Thank you

4 months ago

This was an excellent article. I would never have thought about illegal immigration in the middle of nowhere.

4 months ago

This place is gorgeous from space. The ocean is so pretty there. I will plan a vacation one day and island hop several destination I want to visit.

4 months ago