Published: Mon, February 15, 2021
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Biden to speak at virtual meeting of world's major economies

Biden to speak at virtual meeting of world's major economies

Starting next Friday, the Department of Homeland Security will begin to phase in a program to admit migrants with active cases, undermining the previous administration's "Remain in Mexico" policy, officials said.

It saw tens of thousands of non-Mexican asylum seekers - mostly from Central America - sent back over the border pending the outcome of their asylum applications, creating a humanitarian crisis in the area, exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Instead of building walls, said Lopez Obrador, the United States should join his government's initiative of "cooperation for development", which seeks to curb migration by attacking the poverty that drives would-be migrants to seek a better life overseas.

About 70,000 asylum-seekers were enrolled in the programme officially called Migrant Protection Protocols since it was introduced in January 2019. "I'm not going to do it the way (Donald) Trump did".

The military prison accommodates inmates linked to the USA "war on terror" including Pakistani Khaled Sheikh Mohammed, the self-proclaimed mastermind of the September 11, 2001 attacks. "This latest action is another step in our commitment to reform immigration policies that do not align with our nation's values", Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas said in a statement.

"We continue to convey that this is not the time to come [to the United States]". Since entering office, Biden has reversed many of Trump's isolationist moves, including by rejoining the World Health Organization.

On the day Biden was inaugurated, the DHS announced that new registrations of "Remain in Mexico" program should be halted but instructed those that enrolled to remain where they are till the U.S. government says otherwise.

Lopez Obrador also welcomed Biden's proposal to set up a visa system for Mexican and Central American migrants. And he'll speak about the need for industrialized nations to ensure their economic recovery "is inclusive and benefits all workers, including women and members of historically disadvantaged groups", the White House said in a statement Sunday.

Immigrants in Mexico welcomed the policy change in Washington.

"I am very happy because during our waiting period here, we witnessed unpleasant things", she added.

"Life is very hard in Central America".

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