(CMR) In a bid to undo some of Trump's restrictive immigration policies, the Biden administration has suspended asylum agreements with El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras.
In a statement on Saturday, State Department Secretary Antony Blinken said the United States had “suspended and initiated the process to terminate the Asylum Cooperative Agreements with the Governments of El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras as the first concrete steps on the path to greater partnership and collaboration in the region laid out by President Biden.”
The agreement signed by the Trump administration and these countries in 2019 force asylum seekers from Central America to first seek refuge in those countries before applying to the United States.
However, the policies were never implemented with El Salvador and Honduras, and transfers under the agreements were placed on hold because of the coronavirus pandemic.
Critics had argued that the agreement, which allowed the US to send people seeking asylum at the US/Mexico border to the three Central American countries, put asylum-seekers at risk and that the US was not meeting its obligations under international law to help people fleeing persecution.
This announcement Saturday came after Biden unveiled several measures last week to revamp the country's immigration system, including a task force to reunite families separated at the United States-Mexico border.