The President-elect of Mexico Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador (AMLO) will ask the governments of the United States and Canada to allocate resources to boost development in Central America which he says would help control migratory crises like the one that pushed thousands of Hondurans to leave their country last week for the U.S.
"I am proposing to President Donald Trump that an agreement can be made so that Canada, the United States, and Mexico invest in the development of the Southeast and the Central American countries. We are willing to devote resources to that plan, and Americans and Canadians should do the same," AMLO said Sunday when he traveled to Tuxtla Gutierrez in Chiapas.
He traveled to the southern state of Mexico to thank his followers for their support during the presidential campaign. During his speech, AMLO mentioned that the country is capable of offering opportunities to Central Americans who emigrate.
"I offered work visas to the poor Central Americans who leave their country because they do not have options. Why do I offer that? Because there will be work for Mexicans and for Central Americans in our country,” reiterated the President-elect.
"If there is economic growth in Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, in Chiapas, in Tabasco, in Oaxaca, there will be no migration phenomenon. We can not face this problem only with the use of force, we must guarantee human rights. The main right is the right to life, to go out and seek to mitigate hunger.”
AMLO had promised to develop economic plans, mainly with the U.S., to prevent a mass exodus of Central Americans. He already spoke of making an economic agreement of US$30 billion with the U.S. to boost productivity but he included Canada in his plan for the first time Sunday.
AMLO’s message contradicts what the administration of Enrique Peña Nieto has expressed over the past weeks. The Mexican government has reinforced security on the border and sent numerous groups of federal police to monitor the border crossing. The security forces clashed Friday with the caravan who wanted to cross the Rodolfo Robles border bridge.
This Saturday the federal police have tried to block the passage of the group of immigrants who managed to set foot in Mexico but in the end, accompanied them to the city of Tapachula.
During his visit to Chiapas, AMLO asked Governor Manuel Velasco to protect the rights of Hondurans who are already advancing towards the United States within Mexican territory. "Be very vigilant so that migrants are protected, that they have a guaranteed place to sleep, and above all, that families, women, and children are protected,” he said.
His comments came less than a day before U.S. President Donald Trump labeled the caravan "a national emergency" and asked the military to stay on alert. He also said he would follow through on his threat to cut aid to the Central American countries from which the migrant are fleeing due to violence, unemployment and poverty.