U.S. sends Guatemala first Honduran migrant underneath asylum deal

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FILE PHOTO: Central American migrants are seen outdoors their tents in an encampment in Matamoros, Mexico, on the finish of the Gateway Worldwide Bridge, the place migrants despatched again underneath the “Stay in Mexico” program, formally known as the Migrant Safety Protocols (MPP), await their U.S. asylum hearings, September 14, 2019. Image taken September 14, 2019. Information/Henry Romero/

GUATEMALA CITY (Information) – The primary Honduran asylum-seeker arrived in Guatemala on Thursday from El Paso, Texas, underneath a controversial U.S. settlement that establishes Guatemala as a protected third nation to course of folks fleeing persecution of their homelands.

Guatemalan Inside Minister Enrique Degenhart mentioned the Honduran man arrived on a flight from the USA earlier within the morning.

The Honduran was amongst Guatemalan deportees flown into the Central American nation on certainly one of 4 U.S. deportation flights scheduled on Thursday, Degenhart mentioned.

The brand new effort started after the administration of Republican President Donald Trump brokered an settlement with the Guatemalan authorities in July. The deal permits U.S. immigration officers to drive migrants requesting asylum on the U.S.-Mexican border to use for asylum in Guatemala first.

Trump has made cracking down on immigration a central situation of his 2020 re-election marketing campaign. His administration has labored to limit asylum entry in the USA to curb the variety of largely Central American households arriving on the U.S.-Mexico border.

U.S. officers earlier this week mentioned this system initially could be utilized at a U.S. Border Patrol station in El Paso.

A primary section will goal adults from Honduras and El Salvador and the intention will probably be to course of them inside 72 hours, in accordance with the officers and notes taken by one of many officers throughout a coaching session of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Companies (USCIS) asylum officers.

Democrats and pro-migrant teams have opposed the transfer and contend asylum seekers will face hazard in Guatemala, the place the homicide fee is 5 occasions that of the USA, in accordance with 2017 knowledge compiled by the World Financial institution.

Guatemalan President-elect Alejandro Giammattei, who takes workplace in January, has mentioned he’ll assessment the settlement.

Reporting by Sofia Menchu; Enhancing by Frank Jack Daniel and Lisa Shumaker