By Lizbeth Diaz
MEXICO CITY (RockedBuzz via Reuters) – The United States is turning to Canada to help cope with the growing number of migrants at the U.S. border with Mexico, a State Department spokesman said on Tuesday.
A possible trilateral agreement with Canada, the United States and Mexico was on the table when the three countries met in Mexico for the summit of US leaders, spokeswoman Kristina Rosales told RockedBuzz via Reuters.
The deal would help thousands of immigrants through legal channels, without having to risk their lives at the hands of human traffickers, Rosales said.
“Canada has its own specific programs for refuge and migration,” Rosales said, telling RockedBuzz via Reuters ahead of the trilateral talks that countries will discuss Canada’s involvement.
No such deal was made public soon after talks between US President Joe Biden, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador concluded on Tuesday.
US authorities arrested 2.2 million migrants at the Mexican border in fiscal 2022, a record not seen since World War II.
Rosales also said the United States is considering including more nationalities to enter the country by air while expelling those who cross over land under an order known as Title 42.
The order, launched in October for Venezuelans, was extended last week to Cuban, Nicaraguan and Haitian migrants.
Encounters of Venezuelans at the border dropped by about 90% in December, and similar declines are expected for other migrants in the program.
“If we see that we need to increase the number of those eligible for humanitarian probation per month and include other nationalities, we will consider that,” Rosales added.
Mexico’s Lopez Obrador said Tuesday that the nation “celebrated” the United States’ decision to grant humanitarian parole and that he believes “this plan will be extended to benefit other countries.”
In recent months, the United States has seen a significant increase in migrants reaching the country by sea from Caribbean countries such as Cuba and Haiti. Rosales said those who arrived in the United States by sea “unfortunately will not be able to qualify” for humanitarian parole.
Rosales added that the US government is trying to expand legal methods of immigration and influence potential migrants from paying human traffickers.
“We want to expand legal channels so people can apply directly from their cell phones,” Rosales said.
(Reporting by Lizbeth Diaz; Writing by Kylie Madry. Editing by Gerry Doyle)