USA

Biden administration announces deal to curb migration by militarizing borders

Washington DC – Joe Biden reached a deal with Mexico, Guatemala, and Honduras to increase the police and military presence on the countries' borders in an effort to reduce migration to the US.

Human rights activists have decried the terrible conditions in detention facilities at the US-Mexico border.
Human rights activists have decried the terrible conditions in detention facilities at the US-Mexico border.  © IMAGO / UPI Photo

According to the New York Post, the Biden administration is responding to an influx of migrants arriving at the US Southern border.

"So, Mexico made the decision to maintain 10,000 troops at its southern border, resulting in twice as many daily migrant interdictions," White House spokesperson Jen Psaki announced during a press conference.

"Guatemala surged 1,500 police and military personnel to its southern border with Honduras, and have agreed to set up 12 checkpoints along the migratory route. Honduras surged to 7,000 police and military to disperse a large contingent of migrants," she added.

She did not specify when the deal was struck but did imply that it happened within recent weeks.

Tyler Moran, special assistant to the president for immigration, told MSNBC on Monday, "That not only is going to prevent the traffickers, and the smugglers, and cartels that take advantage of the kids on their way here, but also to protect those children."

Experts warn increased militarization will lead to more violence

Erika Guevara-Rosas, Americas director for Amnesty International, spoke out against US investment in Latin American military and paramilitary groups.
Erika Guevara-Rosas, Americas director for Amnesty International, spoke out against US investment in Latin American military and paramilitary groups.  © IMAGO / Agencia EFE

However, Erika Guevara-Rosas, Americas director for Amnesty International, does not believe that increased militarization will address the rampant human rights violations in the region.

She told Democracy Now that the countries are witnessing alarming violence rates, which have also been linked to increased military and police presence.

Guevara-Rosas highlighted the United States' own role in exacerbating the dangerous local conditions that lead people to migrate in the first place, particularly through its investments in military and paramilitary groups in the region.

"Most of the people that are coming to the United States come from the Northern Triangle of Central America – Honduras, El Salvador, Guatemala. These are countries where people are escaping generalized violence, the lack of state protection. And sometimes they are escaping from the persecution from the state and the violence that is being perpetrated by the government and the police and the army," Guevara-Rosas argued.

She continued, "The US has been investing in military support to these countries. The US has refused investment on aid to provide support for communities to really address the root causes of why people are leaving the countries. The US has fed into... the gaining of the influence of the organized crime because of the weakness of the institutions, of the official institutions."

As such, Guevara-Rosas does not believe the Biden administration's current measures will curb human rights violations, nor serve to protect the right to seek asylum.

Cover photo: IMAGO / UPI Photo

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