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Guatemala seeking to limit migrants under asylum deal with US

Guatemala seeking to limit migrants under asylum deal with US
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Guatemala’s new administration is seeking to cut the number of foreign migrants the U.S. can send to the country under an agreement that was reached last November, Reuters reported Friday.

The U.S. has sent hundreds of asylum-seekers from Honduras and El Salvador to Guatemala since the Asylum Cooperative Agreement was reached with Guatemala’s previous administration.

The Trump administration is seeking to expand the program, but Guatemalan Foreign Minister Eduardo Hernandez told Reuters that the number of migrants sent cannot exceed their “very limited” capacity.

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“We have only one runway” and one migrant reception center, Hernandez told Reuters, adding the agreement “cannot exceed our installed capacity.”

Critics of the agreement say it’s an effort by the U.S. to offshore immigration detention to places that have inadequate resources. In Guatemala, nongovernmental organizations have been sheltering foreign migrants sent to the country under the deal. 

Under the original agreement, the United States agreed to only include individual adults, but Hernandez told Reuters talks were underway to extend it to include families with children.