Mexico "will not accept" to be third safe country for the US

Mexico on Monday rejected becoming a "safe third country" for asylum seekers in the United States, after a senior US border control official said both nations were dialoguing to reach an agreement to help stop the massive northward migration.

The Mexican Foreign Minister, Marcelo Ebrard, giving a press conference.

The Mexican Foreign Minister, Marcelo Ebrard, giving a press conference. / Via REUTERS

Reuters | Diego Oré, Alexandra Alper y Lizbeth Díaz

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Leer en español: México "no aceptará" ser tercer país seguro para EEUU

Mark Morgan, interim commissioner of the Office of Customs and Border Protection (CBP), said in Washington that Mexico and the United States are trying to reach a "cooperation agreement" when asked if their country I was looking for a "safe third country" treaty.

Minutes later, however, Mexican Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard rejected Morgan's proposal.

"I just heard statements from the CBP manager. I reiterate in the face of pressure: Mexico is not and will not accept being a safe third country," the Mexican official wrote on his Twitter account. "We will not accept it."



The agreement, which Mexico has previously refused, means that asylum seekers in the United States, who have previously passed through another country, must first request it in that nation, considered "safe."

In late May, US President Donald Trump threatened to impose tariffs on all Mexican products if the Latin American country did not reduce the flow of migrants who, across their territory, arrive in the United States.

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After days of negotiations, Mexico agreed to strengthen its southern border and expand the TPP, a program that allows the United States to send migrants to Mexican territory while processing their asylum applications. Authorities from both countries will meet on Tuesday in Washington to review the progress of the agreement after they did so at the end of July.

Morgan added that an immigration agreement signed with Guatemala at the end of July is not yet finalized and that the Trump administration also has talks with other countries in the region.

The official also said that the "unprecedented support and cooperation" of Mexico helped stop the tide of immigrants to their country, and also recognized the Central American countries that had come to see mass migration as a regional crisis, not just a problem for the United States.