Mexico Says Its Immigration Crackdown Is A Success

By Jorge Valencia
Published: Saturday, September 7, 2019 - 6:21pm
Updated: Wednesday, September 11, 2019 - 7:40am

Kris Grogan/U.S. Customs and Border Protection
U.S. Border Patrol agents encounter a group of migrants near Los Ebanos, Texas, June 15, 2019.

Top Mexican officials say they cut undocumented migration to the United States by 56% since May, as part of an effort to avert the threat of tariffs under a deal the two countries will review on Tuesday.

Mexico reduced the number of migrants from around the world reaching the U.S. southwestern border with a strategy that has included deploying some 25,000 armed National Guard members to its southern and northern borders, said Foreign Relations Secretary Marcelo Ebrard.

Mexico has also allowed U.S. asylum applicants to wait out their cases in cities south of the border, and has convened meetings about agricultural development plans in northern Central America with those countries' governments.

"Our strategy is working," Ebrard said in a news conference. "We want to urge the U.S. government to back the Mexican strategy, especially in southern Mexico and three Central American countries: Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador."

Ebrard, citing U.S. Customs and Border Protection figures, said the number of migrants apprehended on the U.S. southwestern border in August was about 63,989, down from 144,266 in May. Those numbers include people who presented themselves at U.S. ports of entry and were deemed inadmissible.

America's southern neighbor agreed in June to slash migration to the border, under a threat of import tariffs from President Donald Trump, who has put immigration at the center of his governing and re-election agenda. While migrants travel from as far as South Asia and Central Africa in an attempt to reach the southern border, the majority hail from El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras.

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