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Ambassador Garza: Review asylum procedures

Ambassador Antonio Garza discusses asylum procedures, the need for review, and Mexico's commitment to enforcement. Watch on Fox Business

Quotes from the interview:

On asylum seekers not showing up to their court hearings

“It’s a very high number. One of the things I think is in dire need of review are asylum procedures and these last few days what has been highlighted is the need for more cooperation between the United States and Mexico on the enforcement side. The ability for people to move through Mexico to our southern border and into the process without any intention of appearing for their asylum hearings is something that has been abused. I think that the need for reviewing the asylum procedures is long overdue. One of the things that has come out in the last few days under the imminent threat of tariffs that the President put out there was Mexico and the United States coming to the table. Mexico has agreed to enhance their enforcement procedures along their southern border, committing 6,000 National Guard troops.”

On Mexico's commitment to security enforcement along its borders

“I think they are very committed to it. You’ve seen over the last few months the numbers on enforcement and deportation had already started to trend in the right direction. They’ve committed additional resources to it. More policing and more National Guard along the Isthmus, that 125-mile stretch between the Gulf and the Pacific that all incoming from Central America have to cross. You saw some arrests of relatively high-profile traffickers last week and more enforcement along the bus routes that Central Americans are taking to reach our southern border in the US so it appears that they’re serious about this. That, and they’ve expanded programs like remain in Mexico pending the asylum procedures in the United States so there is a real expansion of the enforcement efforts and a 45-day review process that they’ve agreed to so, yeah, I think this time it’s going to stick.”

On President Trump's tariffs threat on Mexican goods

“I personally think that tariffs were the wrong tool to use in this situation. Using tariffs to try to accomplish policy objectives that are unrelated to trade and economics. I think they brought a certain urgency and an expansion of existing programs. I would have liked to have seen it done the diplomatic route outside the use of that tariff threat, but it’s hard to argue with the fact that it did bring a certain urgency and expansion of existing programs to the table. We’re hopeful that in terms of the US-Mexico cooperation it’ll stick so that we can move forward and start looking at ratification of the USMCA and trade.”


Ambassador Antonio Garza served as U.S. Ambassador to Mexico from 2002 to 2009. He currently serves as Counsel in the Mexico City office of White & Case LLP. Additionally, Ambassador Garza is Chairman of Vianovo Ventures, a management consultancy with a focus on cross-border business development.


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