The White House announces it has started the process of sending migrants to Guatemala as the quest to mitigate the influx of migrants seeking asylum at the southern border continues.
The Trump administration made the announcement Thursday, saying it started sending migrants to the Latin American country as part of the ‘safe third country’ agreement.
According to a CBS report, the first deported migrant arrived in Guatemala on Thursday, and several more are expected to follow suit in the coming days.
Guatemala is also reportedly prepping to accept a growing number of migrants seeking asylum from their home countries, which will reportedly first include adults from EL Salvador and Honduras.
The program was reportedly first implemented in El Paso, Texas, and aims to process 10-15 people each day.
Acting secretary of the Department of Homeland Security, Chad Wolf, weighed in on the move saying, ““[The Department of Homeland Security], alongside the State Department, will continue to work with the Government of Guatemala and international organizations as we expand the program in the weeks and months ahead.”
Asylum-seekers who arrive at the U.S. Mexico border will either wait in Mexico until their claims are processed, or they can be sent to either their home country or Guatemala.
The deal was negotiated earlier this year in an effort to help the United States enlist the help of its southern counterparts to house the large portion of asylum-seekers making the northern trek.
It mandates those seeking asylum in a foreign country must apply for it in Guatemala if they passed through it before reaching the United States- which is why it affects mainly Honduran and El Salvadoran migrants.
The relatively new agreement comes in an effort to secure America’s southern border, as President Trump continues his hardline stance on illegal immigration.
The Trump administration is reportedly planning to implement a live stream of border wall construction in an effort to showcase the progress in real time.
According to a new report, White House senior adviser Jared Kushner initiated the idea this past summer in an effort to show the American people just how many miles have been built, and will be built.
The Trump administration’s chief digital officer is currently working on a new website, expected to launch next year, that will incorporate the live camera feed showing wall construction along the southern border.
The White House has made it clear although border wall construction is ongoing, it aims to build hundreds of miles of wall by the end of 2020.