Arizona immigrants fight on after court setback on licenses

Phoenix, May 17 (EFE).- Young undocumented immigrants in Arizona said Friday that they will fight on in the courts despite a federal judge throwing out their plea to be given the immediate possibility of obtaining driver's licenses.

"We lost a battle, but not the war," Dulce Matuz, president of the Arizona Dream Act Coalition, told Efe on Friday.

U.S. District Judge David Campbell denied Thursday the plea of a coalition of undocumented youths for a preliminary injunction against Gov. Jan Brewer's executive order barring the issuance of driver's licenses to immigrants accepted into the federal Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program.

The plaintiffs could not prove their point that Brewer's order violates the U.S. Constitution's equal protection clause, Campbell said.

Deferred Action is a program established by the administration of President Barack Obama which provides a work permit and a two-year reprieve from deportation for undocumented migrants 30 and under who can show they came to this country before the age of 16.

The federal initiative provides some relief to people who would benefit from the DREAM Act, which has been stalled for years in Congress.

"This case will continue to be fought. Many people have the impression that it's already lost, but all the judge said was that he wasn't gong to block Brewer's decision immediately. The legal case continues," Matuz said Friday.

"In his decision, the judge also said the state could not explain in a rational way the reasons why Arizona Dreamers are refused driver's licenses," the activist, who was one of TIME's 100 Most Influential People in 2012, said.