Mexican president wants to 'bring order' to illegal migration to U.S.

Most of the people caught at the frontier trying to enter the United States illegally come from three violent and impoverished countries: Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador.

By REUTERS
April 1, 2019 20:24
2 minute read.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officials detain a group of migrants, part of a caravan of

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officials detain a group of migrants, part of a caravan of thousands from Central America trying to reach the United States, after they crossed illegally from Mexico to the U.S, as seen from Tijuana, Mexico, December 15, 2018.. (photo credit: CARLOS GARCIA RAWLINS/ REUTERS)

 
X

Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analysis from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later

MEXICO CITY - Mexico will help to regulate the flow of Central American migrants passing through its territory to the United States, but the root causes behind the phenomenon must be tackled, Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said on Monday.

Speaking after U.S. President Donald Trump on Friday threatened to close the U.S. southern border if Mexico did not halt illegal immigration immediately, Lopez Obrador said he would not have a confrontation with the United States.

"I prefer love and peace," Lopez Obrador told reporters at his regular morning news conference.

The leftist president has consistently refused to get drawn into a war of words with Trump over the border.

Most of the people caught at the frontier trying to enter the United States illegally come from three violent and impoverished countries: Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador.

Lopez Obrador has tried to persuade Trump to address the problem by fostering economic development in Central America. But on Saturday the U.S. State Department said it was cutting off aid to El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras.

Mexico began issuing temporary humanitarian visas to some members of a migrant caravan in southern Mexico, giving priority to children and the elderly, the National Migration Institute said Monday. It said it would provide transport back to Central American countries, Cuba and Haiti, on a voluntary basis.

Earlier this year, Mexico handed out humanitarian visas liberally, but reined in the program after a surge in applications. The institute said from next month it was planning to encourage people to apply for visas in their home countries.

It was not immediately clear if the government was limiting the number of visas it issues.


Detentions at the U.S. border have surged in recent months, angering Trump and putting pressure on Lopez Obrador to find a solution that will prevent a shutdown of the frontier to the market for 80 percent of Mexico's exports.

Asked if it was time to put pressure on the Central American countries to do more to tackle the problem, Lopez Obrador said the causes of migration were "not being attended to" and that people needed to be offered more opportunities there.

"Obviously, we have to help because Central American migrants pass through our territory and we have to bring order to this migration, make sure it's legal," Lopez Obrador said.

"That's what we're doing. But serenely, calmly, without a commotion and with great prudence and responsibility."

U.S. Border Patrol projections are for over 90,000 apprehensions at the border during March, according to data provided to the Mexican government - a more than 140 percent increase from March 2018, and a seven-fold jump from 2017.

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said the United States was working with the Central American governments and Mexico to "solve this problem at the border," and pointed to the numbers when asked why Trump had toughened his stance.

"Just look at the math," Pompeo told reporters outside the U.S. Army War College in Carlisle, Pennsylvania. "How many folks are coming across. This is a crisis. We need to fix it."

Join Jerusalem Post Premium Plus now for just $5 and upgrade your experience with an ads-free website and exclusive content. Click here>>

Related Content

A seasteading design contest winner, initiated by the Seasteading Institute
April 18, 2019
U.S.-Thai couple could face death penalty for living at sea

By ALON EINHORN