Mexico says it will finish National Guard roll-out to stem migration this week
Repeats to widen distribution
MEXICO CITY, June 17 (Reuters) - Mexico will complete deployment of National Guard forces on its southern border with Guatemala this week as part of a new immigration control plan agreed with Washington, Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard said on Monday.
"The deployment of the National Guard ordered, with support from the Ministry of Defense and the Navy, will be completed this week," Ebrard said at a news conference.
Mexico is stepping up efforts to cut the flow of mostly Central American migrants toward the U.S. border under pressure from U.S. President Donald Trump, who vowed to hit Mexican goods with tariffs if it did not increase immigration control efforts.
Mexico made a deal on June 7 with the United States to avert the tariffs, setting the clock ticking on a 45-day period for the Mexican government to make palpable progress in reducing the numbers of people trying to cross the U.S. border illegally.
Mexico has pledged to send 6,000 National Guard members along its border with Guatemala under the deal.
That deployment has been patchy so far. A Reuters reporter near the border this weekend saw a handful of officials wearing National Guard insignia and spoke to other security personnel who said they were part of the guard.
There has been a jump in apprehensions at the U.S.-Mexico border this year, angering Trump, who has made reducing illegal immigration one of his signature policy pledges as he heads into his campaign to win a second four-year term in November 2020.
Most of those caught attempting to enter the United States are people fleeing poverty and violence in the troubled Central American nations of Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador.
(Reporting by Hugh Bronstein Editing by Dave Graham and Bill Trott)