UNHCR does not approve of the ‘Remain in Mexico’ program for asylum seekers in the United States
Geneva (Nearby). The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees has opposed a program known as the “Stay in Mexico” (Stay in Mexico) program for asylum seekers at the southern US border, who must remain in Mexican territory while your application is being processed, a policy set by the government of former President Donald Trump that , according to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, does not comply with protocols to protect asylum-seeking migrants.
On Thursday, the United States and Mexico announced some amendments to this policy called Migrant Protection Protocols (MPP), however, despite this, the policy does not have the support of the United Nations agency that monitors the rights of immigrants.
“Of course we saw the announcement, from the outset we expressed our serious concerns about the re-establishment of Migrant Protection Protocols (MPP) and its impact on the safety and right to liberty of asylum seekers and due process of law,” a UNHCR spokesperson said. Boris Checherkov told Proceso.
Announcing the modifications we have seen to this policy is not enough to address our core concerns. We have never been involved in implementing the Migrant Protection Protocols and will not support the re-establishment of this policy.”
In this regard, High Commissioner Filippo Grandi said on his Twitter account that the challenges of asylum and immigration at the US-Mexico border are complex and difficult.
“While traveling through Mexico, El Salvador, and Guatemala, I have noted the challenges posed by expulsions of Central Americans from the United States under Title 42, which often result in serial deportations that can put people at serious risk. I once again appeal for an end to these expulsions,” Grandi said.
Grandi added on Twitter: “In Tijuana, we note the complex dynamics at the US-Mexico border. It is a difficult situation, but these flows can be addressed in a way that protects security and respects the rights of refugees and migrants.”
Solutions can be found through regional cooperation, adequate resources, and practical, effective and humane policies that respect rights and principles. Walls are not the answer. He said the Commission will continue to work with both governments on answers and solutions.
Mexico-CA . Regional Mechanism
Concluding a 10-day visit to Mexico, El Salvador and Guatemala, the High Commissioner for Refugees made an active call for the establishment of a regional mechanism to help expand, coordinate and create synergies between different programmes, policies and initiatives that address the unprecedented scale and complexity of population movements in Mexico and Central America.
“Instead of building walls to contain people, we have to stabilize those who move by creating the necessary conditions so that they do not have to leave and so that those who do have to leave find what they need close to home,” Grandi explained in his book. Statement issued in Geneva.
“What we need is a regional mechanism that generates synergies between the various existing programmes, alliances, platforms and forums that try to address the structural causes of human mobility and seek solutions,” he added.
A number of interrelated economic, social and humanitarian causes, including the lack of opportunity and insecurity caused by gangs and organized crime, the damage caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and the effects of climate change, have displaced nearly one million people in Mexico. and Central America.
In addition, migrants and asylum seekers from further south and the Caribbean are increasingly passing through Central America. This year, more than 100,000 men, women, girls and boys crossed from Colombia to Panama through the Darren Gap forest, while Mexico, in the first six months of 2021, received the third largest number of asylum applications in the world.
“Mexico and Guatemala are not just transit countries, but increasingly are places where refugees and migrants find safety and access to opportunity,” Grandi said.
In these two countries I have seen examples of the generosity, warm welcome and genuine efforts of refugees to form part of the social and economic fabric. I also met many refugees who are happy to work, study and contribute in many different ways to the host communities.”
UNHCR works with governments, civil society and other partners to strengthen asylum systems in Mexico, Guatemala and other Central American countries, and advocates for alternatives to immigration for those in need.
On Tuesday 30 November, the High Commissioner participated in the fourth annual meeting of the Comprehensive Regional Framework for Protection and Solutions (MIRPS), a forum bringing together Belize, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico and Panama with the goal of coordinating regional and national responses aimed at mitigating the root causes of displacement forced, provide effective responses to the protection needs of IDPs, asylum seekers, refugees and returnees in need of protection, and facilitate the search for durable solutions.
“MIRPS has been a driver of initiatives on the agenda to address displacement and refugee situations in the region, uniting efforts to respond to protection needs while at the same time contributing to the stabilization of these flows,” Grandi said.
Grandi emphasized that “there are many excellent local initiatives and projects in the region.” “It is very important and necessary because it shows what can be achieved, but by itself it is not enough. To make a difference, we have to reproduce them, expand their reach and connect them together. We have to broaden the response and this requires the more active participation of development actors, regional institutions and financial institutions. international, UN agencies and civil society.
During his visit, the High Commissioner met with the presidents of El Salvador and Guatemala, however, Grandi did not meet with Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador “because the date of the meeting could not be fixed,” the commission explained to this Weekly.
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