Report: Biden quietly telling Mexico to curb surge of migrants
Report: Biden quietly telling Mexico to curb surge of migrants by Douglas Braff for Sara A Carter
The Biden administration has been quietly urging Mexico to increase its efforts to stem the flow of Latin American migrants, according to a New York Times reportThursday.
This report came the same day that the administration announced plans to share millions of AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine doses with Mexico and Canada.
At Thursday’s press briefing, White House press secretary Jen Psaki said the United States was planning to send 2.5 million doses of the vaccine to Mexico and 1.5 million to Canada, adding that it was “not finalized yet, but that is our aim.”
During a video call this month with Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador, President Joe Biden asked him whether more could be done to help solve the problem of the migrant surge at the border, Mexican officials and another person briefed on the conversation told The Times.
The pair also discussed the possibility of the U.S. sending Mexico some of its extra vaccine doses, a senior Mexican official told the newspaper. Mexico has publicly asked the Biden administration to send it doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine.
“Both governments cooperate on the basis of an orderly, safe and regular migration system,” Roberto Velasco, director general for the North America region at Mexico’s foreign ministry, said in a statement, referring to the engagement between the two countries on migration and vaccines, according to The Times.
However, Velasco said there was no quid pro quo for vaccines: “These are two separate issues, as we look for a more humane migratory system and enhanced cooperation against COVID-19, for the benefit of our two countries and the region.”
A Biden administration official declined to comment on discussions with Mexico, but noted to The Times that both countries shared a common goal of reducing migration by addressing its root causes, and said they were working closely to restrict the flow of migrants to the border.