Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador is issuing conditions for helping the U.S. to stop illegal immigration.
López Obrador asked the U.S. to grant work visas to 10 million Hispanics who have worked in the nation for at least 10 years Friday, as well as to give $20 billion to Latin American and Caribbean countries, halt the blockade for Cuba and end sanctions against Venezuela, according to Fox News.
López Obrador also asked President Joe Biden to open a dialogue with Cuba, arguing the economic relief would target the immigration wave’s cause, according to the Associated Press.
“We have always talked about addressing the causes,” López Obrador said, according to Fox News. “The ideal thing is to help poor countries.”
Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas asked López Obrador to help control the countries’ shared border last month.
A senior Biden administration official claimed the Mexican president has a “very ambitious” agenda, according to NBC News. The staffer added Congress would have to authorize some of López Obrador’s requests.
The U.S. has also asked Mexico to secure its border with Guatemala.
Former U.S. Customs and Border Protection Acting Comissioner Mark Morgan claims the Mexico-Guatemala border is an “essential checkpoint” and tightening it will “absolutely” curtail illegal immigration.
On Christmas Eve, a caravan of 6,000 migrants from Central America, Cuba and Venezuela departed from Tapachula, Mexico, which borders Guatemala, en route to the U.S.
Border police say they need more assistance to tackle immigration responsibilities.
“On the law enforcement side, we’re suffering because we don’t have the manpower to take care of what we call the local business, the criminal elements and then the immigration problem,” Maverick County Sheriff Tom Schmerber stated. “So, it’s costing us a lot of manpower and, of course, the federal government and state troops, too – They’re not here in the river like they’re supposed to be.”
Rep. Tony Gonzales, R-Texas, contends the migrant surge has affected his constituents’ ability to obtain basic necessities.
“This crisis is in our third year. I’m starting to hear from first and second-generation Americans saying, ‘I do not want these people in my country,” Rep. Gonzales said. “It is absolutely turned upside down. Why? Because when they go to the grocery store, they can’t get bread. When they call to go to the hospital, they can’t get a bed. They are feeling further and further behind.”