The US and Mexico reached an agreement Thursday that will revive the Migrant Protection Protocols, or MPP, commonly known as “Remain in Mexico.”
Mexico’s Foreign Ministry confirmed the developments, saying that no migrant will be returned to their home country, for now.
“The Government of the United States has accepted the humanitarian concerns of the Government of Mexico, among which are greater resources for shelters and international organizations, protection for vulnerable groups, consideration of local conditions of security and shelter capacity- as well as the application of measures against COVID-19, such as medical check-ups and the availability of vaccines for migrants,” it said in a statement.
Migrants will reportedly be vaccinated for the coronavirus, with adults receiving the Johnson & Johnson single-dose vaccine and eligible children getting the Pfizer shot.
The US will provide legal counseling and exemptions for “vulnerable” people such as unaccompanied children and pregnant women.
The border policy pushed by the former US administration of Donald Trump seeks to deter asylum seekers coming from Mexico to the US.
President Joe Biden intended to scrap the policy, allowing asylum seekers to wait in US territory until their migration resolution cases could be heard by a judge.
But a court ruling from in the state of Texas reignited the policy.
In 2018, Trump threatened to apply tariffs to steel imports if Mexico did not comply with his “request” to stop migration flows from Mexico’s border.
The result was MPP, which saw Mexican authorities detaining migrants and having them wait in Mexico until their cases allowed them in the US or they were deported.
Around 70,000 migrants have been subjected to the “Remain in Mexico” protocol since it was first implemented in January 2019./aa