The Department of Homeland Security did not respond to requests for comment. The United States has signed similar «safe third country» agreements with El Salvador and Honduras, but they have not yet been implemented. In recent days, Trump administration officials have said they are considering sending Mexican asylum seekers to Guatemala for refuge. Trump viewed the growing number of border arrests, widely seen as substitutes for the scale of unauthorized immigration, as a crisis worthy of declaring a national emergency in February. He called the safe third country agreements one of the many steps he has taken to reduce the numbers. However, the agreements the U.S. is pursuing in Central America are not comparable to those it has with Canada — neither intentionally nor in development, Ojeda said. ACA agreements concern countries with very different standards, procedures and capacities; a lack of transparency and oversight by UNHCR; allow the transfer of asylum seekers to countries they have never crossed on their way to the United States (for example.B. Mexican in Guatemala or Guatemalan in Honduras or El Salvador); and offer minimalist screenings at the U.S. border that do not allow asylum seekers to question the finding that they are subject to transfer.  Until recently, the United States had concluded such an agreement with only one country: Canada.
The government is pursuing similar agreements with Mexico and Panama. Giammattei seems ready to implement the deal as long as he can make some concessions to Washington. Trump has cut $370 million in aid from Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala to stem irregular migration. Giammattei could seek to support job creation programs while aiming to reverse economic sanctions against Guatemala. The new president might see the return to previous aid levels as a «gain» that could allow him to sell the unpopular «safe third country» deal to the Guatemalan people. . . .