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World

Blinken in Costa Rica to discuss Central American migrants

  • The trip aims to put into practice President Joe Biden's desire to tackle issues driving migrant arrivals to the southern border of the United States, said Julie Chung, the acting assistant secretary of state for the Western Hemisphere.
02 Jun 2021

SAN JOSÉ: The US Secretary of State on Tuesday called on Central American countries to defend democracy and fight corruption to address the root causes of undocumented migration to the United States.

Antony Blinken, who is making his first visit to Latin America, was due to meet with foreign ministers from the member countries of the Central American Integration System (Sica): Belize, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua and Panama.

He is also due to meet with Mexican officials.

Upon arrival in the Costa Rican capital San Jose, Blinken headed to a meeting with President Carlos Alvarado and Foreign Minister Rodolfo Solano.

"What we want to hear from our partners is a shared commitment with us to address those root causes" that cause people to emigrate, Blinken said at a joint press conference with President Alvarado.

Those causes "that compel people to leave everything they know, to leave their homes, their families, their communities, their culture, their language, because they feel they have no other choice," Blinken said.

The trip aims to put into practice President Joe Biden's desire to tackle issues driving migrant arrivals to the southern border of the United States, said Julie Chung, the acting assistant secretary of state for the Western Hemisphere.

Chung, speaking to reporters ahead of the trip, recalled that Washington had planned an aid package of $4 billion for the countries of the Northern Triangle (Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador).

"The administration has been clear from the beginning about the importance of addressing corruption," because "when you address the migration -- irregular migration -- the corruption and governance and rule of law, those are all interconnected," Chung added.

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