Looking' to end birthright citizenship: Trump

US President Donald Trump. AFP file photo

President Donald Trump has threatened to end what he called the "ridiculous" US policy of birthright citizenship, which gives citizenship automatically to those born in America, as he sought ways to check illegal immigration.

"We're looking at that very seriously, birthright citizenship. It's frankly ridiculous," Trump said Wednesday outside the White House while responding to a question on the birthright citizenship, which grants automatic citizenship to those born in the US.

His comments echoes his administration's previous vow to unilaterally end the process by which babies born in the country automatically become US citizens.

"Birthright citizenship where you have a baby on our land, you walk over the border, have a baby, congratulations, the baby is now a US citizen. We're looking at it very, very seriously," Trump said.

During his 2016 presidential campaign, Trump had said that he will end the birthright citizenship.

The 14th Amendment of the US Constitution guarantees birthright citizenship and states: "All persons born or naturalised in the United States and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside."

Indian-origin Presidential candidate Kamala Harris, a Democratic senator from California, mocked Trump's comments on Twitter Wednesday, stating the President "should 'seriously' consider reading the Constitution."

Trump's statement came as the administration announced a proposal to detain undocumented families together indefinitely, replacing the agreement that set a 20-day limit for holding children, The Hill reported.

His administration enacted and later reversed a "zero tolerance" policy that led to the separation of thousands of migrant families. He has also sought changes to asylum laws to keep refugees in Mexico while they wait to be processed.

The White House last week unveiled a rule that would make it more difficult for some immigrants to obtain green cards, the report said. 

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