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Mexico Agreed To Take Action At Border Months Before Trump Announced ‘Deal’ To Avert Tariffs: Report


Mexico Agreed To Take Action At Border Months Before Trump Announced ‘Deal’ To Avert Tariffs: Report

President Trump’s announcement Friday night that he had reached a deal with Mexico to avert imposing sweeping tariffs on the country in exchange for Mexico’s promise to crack down on illegal migration reportedly consists largely of actions Mexico had already promised to take months ago in prior discussions with the U.S., according to officials from both countries who are familiar with the negotiations.

According to the New York Times, officials from both countries said Mexico’s agreement to deploy its National Guard throughout Mexico, “giving priority to its southern border,” had already been promised in March during secret discussions with then-Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen and Olga Sanchez, the Mexican secretary of the interior, in Miami.

The New York Times reports:

The centerpiece of Mr. Trump’s deal was an expansion of a program to allow asylum-seekers to remain in Mexico while their legal cases proceed. But that arrangement was first reached in December in a pair of painstakingly negotiated diplomatic notes that the two countries exchanged. Ms. Nielsen announced the Migrant Protection Protocols during a hearing of the House Judiciary Committee five days before Christmas.

And over the past week, negotiators failed to persuade Mexico to accept a “safe third country” treaty that would have given the United States the legal ability to reject asylum seekers if they had not sought refuge in Mexico first.

The Times notes that it was not immediately clear whether the president believes Friday’s deal represents new concessions or whether his embrace of the agreement was an attempt to avoid possible negative political and economic ramifications from imposing steep tariffs on Mexico.

Trump on Friday tweeted: “I am pleased to inform you that The United States of America has reached a signed agreement with Mexico. The Tariffs scheduled to be implemented by the U.S. on Monday, against Mexico, are hereby indefinitely suspended. Mexico, in turn, has agreed to take strong measures to stem the tide of Migration through Mexico, and to our Southern Border. This is being done to greatly reduce, or eliminate, Illegal Immigration coming from Mexico and into the United States. Details of the agreement will be released shortly by the State Department. Thank you!”

On Saturday he added: “Everyone very excited about the new deal with Mexico!”

“I would like to thank the President of Mexico, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, and his foreign minister, Marcelo Ebrard, together with all of the many representatives of both the United States and Mexico, for working so long and hard to get our agreement on immigration completed!,” he added in a subsequent tweet.


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