AZUZ: U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions says that if an American city or state is hoping to get money or grants from the federal government, it has to comply with federal immigration law. This is part of the Trump administration effort to increase pressure on America's "sanctuary cities", cities that shelter people who were in the U.S. illegally.
NICK VALENCIA, cnn CORRESPONDEN: The one thing that you need to know about sanctuary cities is that they're not necessarily illegal designation or even a legislative one. They're given that label because of the perception that they are not enforcing federal immigration law. There are more than 200 cities or jurisdictions in the United States that are labeled sanctuary cities. They're called sanctuary cities because the mayors of these cities or leaders of these jurisdictions do not require local law enforcement to ask a person's immigration status when they're detained or they're arrested.
SUBTITLE: In 2015, more than 200 state and local jurisdictions did not honor requests from Immigration and Customs Enforcement to detain individuals.
AZUZ: The policy that requires states to show they're complying with federal law in order to receive federal funding was put in place by the Obama administration last summer. The Trump administration says that if a city is not enforcing U.S. immigration laws and cooperating with the federal government on the issue, it's making the nation less safe. And state officials who support the federal policy say enforcing it will help the address the problem of illegal immigration.
Mayors of these sanctuary cities say their areas are safe because they allow undocumented immigrants to go to school, get medical care and report crimes without the fear of being deported. They say the cities will be less safe if the government takes away federal funding for their police departments.
The Trump administration hasn't named the cities it will go after for defying the policy and it hasn't said what funds it would withhold or try to get back if sanctuary cities don't cooperate.