Mexico considers overhaul of Central American immigration policy

According to US and Mexican officials an agreement is currently under negotiation that would dramatically increase Mexico’s immigration enforcement efforts and allow the US to deport more Central Americans seeking asylum. Officials caution that the deal is not final and President Donald Trump’s acceptance of the agreement is far from certain. The planned overhaul of asylum rules across the region would require Central American migrants to seek refuge in the first country they enter after leaving their homeland, according to a Washington Post report. Guatemalan migrants would therefore be required to remain in Mexico, and Honduran and Salvadoran migrants would not be authorised to travel beyond Guatemala. Migrants who will have arrived at the US border would be deported to the appropriate third country. According to the article, migrants who express fear of death or torture in their home country would be subjected to a toughened screening processes in the US, increasingly the likelihood that asylum requests would be rejected. Faced with Trump’s threat to impose steadily rising tariffs on goods imported from Mexico beginning June,  Mexican officials have pledged to deploy up to 6,000 national guard troops to the area of the country’s border with Guatemala, which the Mexican Government claims will immediately reduce the number of Central Americans heading north toward the US border.

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