An immigration analyst says it’s true that Mexico has cooperated with the United States over the flow of migrants but much has been done for public relations purposes.
Top officials from Mexico began talks in Washington, D.C. on Monday to try to head off President Donald Trump's threat to impose a five-percent tariff that could go as high as 25 percent on all Mexican imports.
The president's threat, announced last week, is the White House’s latest effort to force Mexicans authorities to contain the massive flow of Central American migrants heading toward the U.S. border.
Mexico’s president, Andrés Manuel López Obrador, sent his foreign affairs secretary to Washington to assure the remind the administration that Mexico has been working to slow the flow of migrants.
In a statement directed at President Trump, President Obrador lectured that “social problems” are not solved with “duties or coercive measures,” The Associated Press reported.
Mark Krikorian, executive director of the Center for Immigration Studies, agrees that Mexico has been more cooperative with the Trump administration.
“There is lots of room for improvement obviously,” he says, “but they've been much more cooperative than they have been before in trying to limit this flow of people from Central America.”
With that said, however, he advises that supposed assistance has been just for show such as the caravan that was halted at the border.
“What they ended up doing was just getting people bus tickets to different places along the border to kind of spread them out,” Krikorian recalls, “so that if they were going to cross they wouldn't be doing it all in one big unit, which would be bad optics, be incendiary.”
Much of the supposed “cooperation” therefore amounts to an attempt at good public relations with Trump, he adds.