The presidents of Mexico, Andrés Manuel López Obrador, and Guatemala, Alejandro Giammattei, They analyzed this Thursday, May 5, the causes of migration with the aim of defining lines of action aimed at curbing this phenomenon, for which they agreed to implement several actions together.
The Presidency of Mexico shared a statement outlining 21 points that were addressed by the leaders during the first official tour of Central America by Andrés Manuel López Obrador (AMLO), and whose main objective was to deal with the issue of irregular migration; however, they also made other agreements in search of local development.
AMLO’s visit comes days after US President Joe Biden will be concerned about the “unprecedented” migratory flow, in fact, described as unprecedented for being the largest in the last two decades with 7,800 migrant detentions daily. On that occasion, Biden asked AMLO for help to tackle the problem.
“Migration is evidence of injustice, my government has set out to eradicate the conditions of poverty, dissatisfaction and insecurity that originate it, so that no one has to leave their home, their family and their land due to hunger or violence when they are forced to experience the dangers of the journey in Mexico or the discrimination and police persecution north of the Rio Grande,” said López Obrador.
López Obrador, according to the Mexican embassy, arrived on a commercial flight to the La Aurora International Airport, from the Guatemalan capital, and from there it was transferred to the National Palace of Culture for the official reception.
The two presidents held a private bilateral meeting accompanied by their respective delegations and then released a joint statement on the results of the meeting.
The Mexican president is accompanied, among others, by his chancellor Marcelo Ebrard, and his Secretaries of Defense, Luis Cresencio Sandoval, and Navy, José Rafael Ojeda Durán, among others.
In the statement issued by the leaders, 21 points were highlighted, including the customs information exchange program, which came into force on February 17, which facilitates customs operations, as well as the formalization of an agreement to facilitate the passage of cargo between both countries.
This project, which Guatemala will call Customs Bicentennial, It will encourage a greater commercial flow at border crossings.
They also highlighted the advances in the Comprehensive Development Plan in the countries of the Northern Triangle and Mexico as a strategy to curb migration from its structural causes.
Among the specific agreements is also the Sowing Life Project in Guatemala, that will contribute to the food security of the country, mainly in the areas where there is greater migration.
On the migration issue, it was also agreed to strengthen relations between all the Mexican and Guatemalan consulates in the United States and the planning of a ministerial conference for the second half of 2022. In that sense, it was also A Mexican Consulate will be established in Petén.
They reaffirmed their fight against human trafficking, migrant smuggling and the fight against criminal networks.
Mexico welcomed the fact that Guatemala was its main trading partner in Central America, for which they drew up a roadmap to enhance the opportunities of the Free Trade Agreement between Mexico and Central America. As part of it too air frequencies will be expanded.
The treaty also highlights collaboration in the attention to disasters and climate change.
“The projects Building the Future, which is aimed at young people, and the Sembrando Vida, which is aimed at giving peasants the possibility of resources that allow them to develop their lands and recover the forest mass and be able to carry out productive projects, especially in the border area with our sister country,” said Giammattei.
He added that “we will continue to work hard in the relationship with the Government and with the three governors of the states bordering Guatemala, with whom we will be able to expand that possibility of touching on the points, the conflicts and the social problems that we have in common, but above all to achieve the long-awaited development of the border area between Guatemala and Mexico”.
AMLO also spoke about the implementation of the Mayan Train, which will start operating at the end of 2023.
“The new railway from the Isthmus of Tehuantepec to the border with Guatemala will become a reality. The Mayan Train, 1,500 km that includes five states in the southeast, three of which have borders with Guatemala: Chiapas, Tabasco and Campeche, plus Yucatan and Quintana Roo,” said AMLO.
In addition, he said that the Mayan Train will be inaugurated in December 2023 and “will have a passenger and cargo station in Tenosique, Tabasco, 50 km from El Ceibo, on the border of our countries.
Guatemala is the first stop on his tour of the countries of the Northern Triangle of Central America which also includes El Salvador and Honduras, the country from which he will travel to Belize and finally to Cuba.
According to Mexican diplomatic sources, this is the first official tour abroad carried out by López Obrador since he assumed the Presidency in December 2018.
Also read: “A job creation initiative”: Mexico and the US agree on a development plan for Guatemala and other countries in the region
One of the main issues to be discussed at the bilateral meeting will be immigration, which worries not only Mexico but also the United States, whose president, Joe Biden, is aware of López Obrador’s tour of Central America, according to the Mexican ambassador, Romeo Ruiz.
Due to its geographical position, the Guatemalan territory is a natural passageway for migrants from different countries. seeking to cross Mexico and reach the United States in search of better living conditions.
Only from Guatemala it is estimated that every year some 300 thousand people in search of the so-called “American dream”.
Also read: The US reports 7,800 migrant arrests daily and Biden asks AMLO for help
With information from EFE