Just two days ahead of the international summit on the Global Compact on Migration, the United States has announced its departure from the migrant and refugee initiative, saying it goes against its immigration policies.
"Today, the U.S. Mission to the United Nations informed the U.N. Secretary-General that the United States is ending its participation in the Global Compact on Migration," the U.S. said in a statement Saturday.
The 2016, non-binding agreement, also known as the New York Declaration for Refugees and Migrants, is unique in its protection of asylum seekers and was adopted by the Barack Obama administration and by all 193 United Nations members states of the General Assembly.
According to the U.N., the New York Declaration “expresses the political will of world leaders to save lives, protect rights, and share responsibility on a global scale.”
However, the open-armed policy sharply contrasts with current U.S. immigration policy and U.S. President Donald Trump’s promise to increase deportations, build a wall on the border with Mexico and promote “America First.”
"The New York Declaration contains numerous provisions that are inconsistent with U.S. immigration and refugee policies and the Trump Administration's immigration principles,” the statement continued. “As a result, President Trump determined that the United States would end its participation in the Compact process that aims to reach international consensus at the U.N. in 2018."
Seemingly contradicting the intent of the pact to address the worldwide refugee crisis, U.S. Ambassador Nikki Haley said that although the U.S. will not participate in the global effort, it will continue to support migrants, on its own terms. "No country has done more than the United States, and our generosity will continue. But our decisions on immigration policies must always be made by Americans and Americans alone,” she said.
“We will decide how best to control our borders and who will be allowed to enter our country. The global approach in the New York Declaration is simply not compatible with U.S. sovereignty," she continued.
Since Trump came into office, the United States has withdrawn from one international agreement after another, the most recent being the cultural and educational body UNESCO after claiming it had an “anti-Israel bias.”