Mexico agrees to accept more US asylum seekers

Sunday, 09 Jun, 2019

The US president had always been insisting that Mexico is "sending" migrants across its northern border and does little to combat the drug cartels, smugglers, and human traffickers.

An analysis published by the Brookings Institution last week said that the tariff would have proven costly, both for Mexico and the United States.

Thousands of asylum seekers have already been sent back to Mexico, prompting criticism from human rights campaigners that the migrants will lack due process and face new danger in border cities such as Ciudad Juarez. Mexican-grown foods would have been hit hard by President Donald Trump's threatened tariffs, but Trump dropped his plan after the two nations struck a deal on stemming the flow of migrants from Central America. It was unclear, however, what - if anything - Mexico had changed.

Mexico has agreed, it said, to "unprecedented steps to increase enforcement to curb irregular migration", including the deployment of the Mexican National Guard throughout the country, especially on its southern border with Guatemala.

Donald Trump made the announcement only hours after returning from Europe.

They expressed concern about the harm that the tariff might pose for American consumers.

What's the situation on the US-Mexico border?

Mexican authorities prevented an additional "migrant caravan" originating in Central America from entering its borders this week; a gesture that could help future trade talks with the Trump administration.

Some lawmakers had warned Trump against implementing tariffs against Mexico, with some suggesting that Congress enact measures to block them.

Mexican and USA officials reportedly met for about 12 hours Friday to reach the agreement, which calls for Mexico to break up trafficking networks and commit to policing its border more strictly.

He said that at any given time, there are 100,000 migrants moving through Mexico to get to the US border.

Mexican Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard, who quickly flew to Washington and had stayed ever since following Trump's tariff threat by Twitter on May 30, said he believed the two sides had found a compromise.

"Soldiers and police forced hundreds of migrants in the group - which was mostly from Honduras - to a halt in the southern town of Metapa de Dominguez, about 12 kilometers (7.5 miles) from the Mexican-Guatemalan border", adds the report.

"There is dialogue and an agreement can be reached", Lopez Obrador said.

Trump has nonetheless embraced tariffs as a political tool he can use to force countries to comply with his demands - in this case on his signature issue of immigration.

The stakes were raised on Wednesday as US Customs and Border Protection announced that migrant arrests had surged in May to the highest level in more than a decade. Those people had anxious about the negative economic consequences for Americans and argued that tariffs - which would likely spark retaliatory taxes on U.S. exports - would also hurt the administration politically. "This is an historic night!" he tweeted.