Central America and US commit to regional strategy to curb “irregular migration” as Trump slow-walks aid

During a Meeting with US Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, the governments of Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador and the United States have agreed to a series of measures to curb US-bound migration from Central America, including increased border policing and regional efforts to deter international crime. While the details of the strategy, as well as the list of participating countries have yet to be disclosed, Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen is quoted as saying that the agreement was the “first of its kind”, as the security in the region would be reinforced by air, land and sea. The announcement follows reports in US media that Trump was delaying the disbursement of aid to the governments of the Northern Triangle for reasons that were not clear to Administration officials. According to Politico, a US-based political news agency, the fund allocation – a significant portion of roughly US$627m that Congress earmarked for Central America in 2018 – had been in limbo for months at the White House Office of Management and Budget due to lack of clarity regarding President Trump’s strategy toward the region. It has been reported elsewhere that the delayed disbursement of aid may have been used to bring the leaders of the Northern Triangle to an agreement on measures to curb immigration to the US.

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