U.S. Vice-President Kamala Harris received a wave of criticism led by New York representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez over her unwelcome comment to Guatemalan migrants.
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“I want to be clear to folks in the region who are thinking about making that dangerous trek to the United States-Mexico border, do not come, do not come," Harris said during a press conference.
In response, Ocasio-Cortez turned to social media to point out that "first, seeking asylum at any U.S. border is a 100 percent legal method of arrival. Second, the US spent decades contributing to regime change and destabilization in Latin America. We can’t help set someone’s house on fire and then blame them for fleeing," the Congresswoman said.
The remarks come as the U.S. has pledged more funding and personnel assistance to militarize Central America further, which ultimately sparks violence and triggers the largest migrant waves.
Human rights organizations Refugees International and the Asylum Seeker Advocacy Project also highlighted that returning asylum seekers is illegal and for migrants to seek refuge in the U.S. is legit according to the U.S. and international law. This, as Harris confirmed, that she "believes that if they come to the U.S. borders, they will be turned back."