President Donald Trump says he is committed to sanctioning and placing tariffs on foreign countries who refuse to take back their nationals after being deported from the United States.
In a meeting with State Department, Defense Department, and Homeland Security officials, Trump promised to put tariffs on the goods of countries and sanction others that refused their nationals in an “America First” initiative that past administrations under President George W. Bush and President Barack Obama failed to implement.
But if they don’t take them back, we’ll put sanctions on the countries. We’ll put tariffs on the countries. They’ll take them back so fast your head will spin. We’ll just tariff their goods coming in, and they’ll take them back in two seconds. You have a lot of people from those countries, and they’ll take them back. [Emphasis added]
We’ve had a very weak policy. We bring them back; they say, “We don’t want them.” And why should they? They killed five people. Why would they want them? And we will do something with regard to sanctions and tariffs, where they will — your head will spin how fast they get taken back. Okay? Every country is the same.
And the other is, we give a lot of aid to some of those countries. And to those countries, we’ll stop giving aid, and they will take them back instantaneously. Okay? You just have to let us know just who they are. A lot of ways to handle it. But you can only handle it economically, because otherwise — you know, you’re not going to force them in. And that’s so easy to solve. It sounded difficult, but it’s not. That’s an easy one. [Emphasis added]
Assistant Secretary of State Carl Risch said some of the worst offenders of not taking back their nationals include China, noting that a number of foreign countries have already been hit with sanctions by the State Department.
“The worst offenders, numerically — countries like China, for example, has a long history of not taking back their removal cases,” Risch said. “But most recently, in September, we started a visa sanction plan with Guinea, Eritrea, Sierra Leone, and Cambodia. And we’re seeing some progress there. The visa sanctions do work in these cases, sir. And we’re seeing that there are people going back to these countries that would not have gone back a year or two ago.”
As Breitbart News reported, Trump’s State Department hit Sierra Leone, Eritrea, Cambodia, and Guinea with sanctions back in mid-2017 after the countries would not take back their nationals from the U.S.
The move by the Trump administration comes in the form of a “visa suspension,” where foreign nationals are barred from entering the U.S. on any of the various visa programs.
John Binder is a reporter for Breitbart News. Follow him on Twitter at @JxhnBinder.