Biden administrator gives $ 20 million more to Mexico and Central America for migrants and refugees

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The Biden administration said on Friday it is providing an additional $ 20 million to Mexico and Central America to help the hundreds of thousands of migrants and refugees in the region – including money for health care , housing and legal aid.

The State Department announced that through its Office of Population, Refugees and Migration, it is providing money “to help meet the urgent humanitarian needs of nearly 700,000 asylum seekers, refugees and migrants. vulnerable in Central America and Mexico “.

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The money will support access to legal aid, shelter, health care and “psychological and psychosocial support,” a State Department statement said.

This brings the total aid for fiscal year 2021 for the region to more than $ 331 million, the agency said, also noting that the United States is the largest donor of aid to the region and to migrants in the region. the region.

Amid a continuing and growing crisis at the southern border that saw more than 200,000 migrant encounters per month in July and August, the Biden administration has focused on tackling “root causes” like poverty. , violence and corruption in Central America.

“With this new humanitarian assistance, the United States is advancing our mission of collaborative migration management in the region, including promoting access to protection and increasing the United States response to urgent humanitarian needs in Central America and Mexico. “, says the press release. “This is part of the administration’s overall approach to supporting safe, orderly and humane migration while addressing the root causes of irregular migration in the region.”

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Critics of the administration have instead blamed the increase in the number of migrants on the more lax border policies of the Biden administration, including a rollback of Migrant Protection Protocols (MPPP), reduced use of the country’s public health protections. title 42 and a return to “catch-and-release.”

The Biden administration said this week that it would be able to restart migrant protection protocols – known as the “Remain-in-Mexico” policy – by mid-November in response to an order from the government. court forcing the administration to do so. . Trump-era policy keeps migrants in Mexico pending the outcome of their legal proceedings, rather than being released inside the United States.

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However, the administration also warned that the implementation of the policy requires Mexico’s cooperation, saying that “DHS cannot implement the MPP without Mexico’s independent decision to accept individuals as states- United are looking to send to Mexico, “and will need its agreement on the number of entries. will be authorized and that will be accepted for return.


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