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LatinNews Daily - 01 April 2019

Nielsen chairs meeting in Central America

Central America: On 27 March, US Secretary of Homeland Security Kirstjen Nielsen travelled to the Honduran capital, Tegucigalpa, where she met with security ministers from Guatemala, Honduras, and El Salvador (Enrique Degenhart, Julian Pacheco, and Mauricio Landaverde, respectively). The meeting was held to address the “root causes” of the migration crisis. This made headlines late last year after thousands of Central Americans formed caravans to make the journey overland to the US in response to the violence and lack of economic opportunities in their home countries. A press release by the US embassy in Honduras notes that “a final compact would cover four distinct areas of collaboration: combating human trafficking and migrant smuggling; countering organised crime and gangs; expanding information and intelligence sharing; and strengthening border security”. However, it omits mention of efforts to promote prosperity. The US embassy press release cites Nielsen as saying “We’ve agreed to ramp up our joint enforcement action against criminal networks and to enhance regional border security...We’ve also agreed to do more…to protect vulnerable populations – women, children, and families – to ensure that individuals legitimately fleeing persecution receive the protections they deserve as close to home as possible.”

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