President Joe Biden spoke with President Alejandro Giammattei Falla of Guatemala promising to develop a “humane and effective” plan for migrants traveling from his country to the United States.
“Both Presidents agreed for their respective teams to meet in the coming weeks to develop an effective and humane plan of action to manage migration,” a readout of the call sent to reporters read.
Biden also expressed condolences for the 13 Guatemalan migrants who were shot and killed in Northern Mexico in January and had their bodies badly burned. A dozen state police officers in Mexico have been charged in the killings.
President Biden also promised to help Guatemala by “combating corruption, promoting economic opportunity, and enhancing civilian security” which the White House described as the “root causes” of migration from Guatemala to the United States.
Biden’s call with the Guatemala president proves he is willing to return migration back to normal, after canceling President Trump’s agreement with the country to require migrants to apply for asylum in their own countries.
During his presidential campaign, Biden repeatedly blamed the United States for failing to help countries like Guatemala improve their economic conditions so few migrants would want to leave their country for the United States.
A growing number of migrants from Honduras, Guatemala, and El Salvador have resumed their journey north after President Biden vowed to roll back President Trump’s efforts to block migration into the country.
In January, a caravan of an estimated 6,500 migrants began pushing through the Guatemalan southern border for the United States, according to Guatemala officials.