United States to establish immigration processing centers in Latin America
U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken has announced the implementation of. new immigration enforcement measures to mark the end of the border policy known as Title 42.which allows the Administration to deny the opportunity to apply for asylum to migrants. on health grounds.
This controversial measurepassed during the era of former President Donald Trump, will no longer be implemented as of May 11. and will give way to a new immigration policy that includes the creation of several ‘Regional Processing Centers’.
The State Department has specified that for the time being. these centers will be located in Colombia and Guatemala and will start operations in the coming weeks. In addition, Blinken explained that more international partnerships will be sought to open more centers in the future.
As reported by a senior official of the Department, these centers “will be implemented by international partner organizations, and people (who want to migrate) will talk to specialists, will be examined and, if they qualify, they will be referred to refugee resettlement or other legal avenues such as parole programs, family reunification or existing labor avenues.”
“The Regional Processing Centers shall also provide information on local options, including. regularization opportunities in host countries. and social services available. The U.S. criteria for refugee resettlement will not change. However, through this expanded effort, we hope to identify more people who can benefit from them,” he detailed.
In addition, Spain has committed to accept people passing through these centers.This is something that Canada will also do and which Blinken personally thanked during a press conference.
Asked about how it will work, Blinken gave more details: “It’s about taking advantage of the fact that international partners have physical locations in a number of countries where they’re doing very, very important work, and being able to bring some of our own staff and experts to these centers to people can come to them and explore if they are eligible. for one of the various legal avenues to come to this country, whether as a refugee, whether for family reunification, whether for a work pathway.”
“And that means it’s much easier for people who are contemplating coming to determine from their own countries if they have a legal pathway to do so, so it’s making the legal pathways much more accessible,” he explained.