NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito had some harsh words Friday for a plan by the Obama administration to round up and deport hundreds of illegal immigrants.

As WCBS 880’s Rich Lamb reported, Mark-Viverito has denounced a federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement surge of arrests planned for later this month and in June.

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The sweeps reportedly are to be focused on immigrant mothers and children from Central America who already have been told to leave the United States.

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“I’m really horrified, and I do not understand why this is happening right now,” Mark-Viverito said. “The focus of these raids is on these women and their children that are fleeing horrific violence on unaccompanied minors, right? These are children and individuals that are fleeing violence. And they should be treated as refugees.”

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The speaker added that it is sad the country is seeing historic numbers of deportations happening under a Democratic president.