U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris said the U.S. relationship with Mexico is entering “a new era,” when Harris met with Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador in Mexico City on Tuesday to discuss immigration from Central America, among other numbers.
Harris and Lopez Obrador were present for the signing of a memorandum of understanding on the work that country development agencies plan to do in the countries of the Northern Triangle of Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador.
They then met for discussions focused on focusing on “root causes” of migration.
“I am convinced that we are embarking on a new era that makes clear the interdependence and interconnection between nations,” Harris said at the beginning of the meeting.
Mexican Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard said the discussion was “very successful.” The economy, security cooperation and development in southern Mexico and Central America have been on the rise, Ebrard said in a tweet, without going into more detail.
It concludes the meeting of President López Obrador and Vice President Kamala Harris. High-level economy and dialogue, security cooperation, development in southern Mexico and Central America were discussed. It was a very successful meeting !!
– Marcelo Ebrard C. (@m_ebrard) June 8, 2021
Translation: The meeting of President Lopez Obrador and Vice President Kamala Harris concluded. High-level economy and dialogue, security cooperation, development in southern Mexico and Central America were discussed. It was a very successful meeting !!
Lopez Obrador, who built a working relationship with Donald Trump Despite the former U.S. president’s economic threats and insults against Mexico over migration, he said his government was very interested in maintaining good relations with its northern neighbor.
The administration of President Joe Biden has struggled to respond to a large number of migrant families and children reaching the US-Mexico border, mainly from Central America, in recent months.
Al Jazeera’s John Holman said from Mexico City that migration from Mexico to the United States is “obviously a long-term phenomenon” and even if it flows and flows, many people seem to be leaving.
Since Biden took office in January, the number of migrants taken into custody by U.S. officials at the border is resurrected at the highest levels in 20 years.
“(US) Customs and Border Protection says that in the last fiscal year they have seen more than 300,000 Mexicans at the border,” Holman said.
Holman said Al Jazeera was recently in the Mexican state of Michoacan, where residents said “there was no other option but to flee.”
The Mexican government will have to show that it can provide security for people in those parts of the country, ”Holman concluded.
The administration sees Mexico as an important companion both to slow the flow of Nordic migration and to improve development in Central America.
“[T]The United States has joined Mexico in a new strategic partnership to share information and strategies and co-manage new programs to foster economic opportunity through agricultural development and youth empowerment, ”the White House said in a statement Tuesday.
“The two leaders (Harris and Lopez Obrador) have also agreed to increase cooperation to further secure our borders and ensure orderly immigration,” he said.
The United States and Mexico broadly agree that they need to address the underlying causes of poverty and violence. stem migration from Central America. Migrants and asylum seekers they said socio-economic conditions, unemployment, gang violence and recent devastating storms continue to push them to leave their countries of origin, among other things.
Harris, commissioned by Biden to help stem migration to the United States, it has pledged $ 310m more in aid to Central American nations to try to tackle the impact of last year’s coronavirus and hurricane pandemic.
For its part, Mexico has expanded national tree planting programs and youth unemployment benefit programs in El Salvador and Honduras on a limited scale and plans to offer them also in Guatemala, he said. Ebrard Tuesday before the Harris meeting.
The White House has also announced that it will spend $ 130 million over the next three years to promote the protection of Mexican workers and the implementation of labor reforms in the country.
Tuesday’s meeting came after Harris met with Guatemalan President Alejandro Giammattei a day earlier. Following this meeting, Harris said the two leaders had “robust” discussions on the fight against corruption to deter migration from Central America.
It’s disappointing to see.
First, seeking asylum at every U.S. border is a 100% legal method of arrival.
Since then, the United States has spent decades contributing to regime change and destabilization in Latin America. We can’t help but set someone on fire and then accuse him of fleeing. https://t.co/vADyh5H0bw
– Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) June 7, 2021
During a joint press conference, Harris tried to dissuade potential migrants from traveling to the United States, telling them. “it does not come”- a blunt statement that immigration advocates he said it went against the administration’s commitment to take a more humane approach to migration than in Trump.
New York representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez criticized Harris’ statement, calling it “disappointing” and saying that asylum seeking is a legal means of entry into the United States.
The White House sought to clarify Harris’ comments Tuesday.
“What the vice president is simply conveying is that there is more work to be done, that we don’t even have these systems in place,” White House press secretary Jen Psaki said during a briefing.
“It’s always a dangerous journey … and we need more time to do the work to ensure that the asylum transformation is where it needs to be.”