• A la Une : Le Honduras a-t-il signé un accord secret avec Washington ? - Amériques - RFI
    http://www.rfi.fr/ameriques/20190910-une-honduras-signe-accord-secret-washington

    Il y a 1 mois,

    Le #Honduras aurait accepté de « contrôler le flux croissant de Cubains et de Nicaraguayens qui passent sur son sol » pour se rendre aux États-Unis. Le pacte migratoire aurait été signé au moment où le nom du chef de l’État hondurien était cité dans une affaire de trafic international de drogue impliquant son frère.

  • Le Honduras reconnaît Jérusalem comme capitale d’Israël et y ouvre un « bureau diplomatique »
    https://www.20minutes.fr/monde/2590915-20190828-honduras-reconnait-jerusalem-comme-capitale-israel-ouvre-

    Ce #Honduras là,
    https://seenthis.net/messages/741798

    In her new book, The Long Honduran Night, Dana Frank asks whether #Honduras should now be called a ‘failed state’. She argues that it shouldn’t, as it works perfectly for those who control it: landowners, drug traffickers, oligarchs and transnational corporations, the US-funded military and corrupt public officials. The Trump administration has seen Hernández as an ally in their project of restoring US influence in Latin America, promoting transnational capitalism and widening the reach of the US military.

    #les_amis_des_sionistes

  • USA : Dublin façon frontière Mexique/USA

    Faute d’accord avec le #Guatemala (pour l’instant bloqué du fait du recours déposé par plusieurs membres de l’opposition devant la Cour constitutionnelle) et le #Mexique les désignant comme des « #pays_sûr », les USA ont adopté une nouvelle réglementation en matière d’#asile ( « #Interim_Final_Rule » - #IFR), spécifiquement pour la #frontière avec le Mexique, qui n’est pas sans faire penser au règlement de Dublin : les personnes qui n’auront pas sollicité l’asile dans un des pays traversés en cours de route avant d’arriver aux USA verront leur demande rejetée.
    Cette règle entre en vigueur aujourd’hui et permet donc le #refoulement de toute personne « who enters or attempts to enter the United States across the southern border, but who did not apply for protection from persecution or torture where it was available in at least one third country outside the alien’s country of citizenship, nationality, or last lawful habitual residence through which he or she transited en route to the United States. »
    Lien vers le règlement : https://www.dhs.gov/news/2019/07/15/dhs-and-doj-issue-third-country-asylum-rule
    Plusieurs associations dont ACLU (association US) vont déposer un recours visant à le faire invalider.
    Les USA recueillent et échangent déjà des données avec les pays d’Amérique centrale et latine qu’ils utilisent pour débouter les demandeurs d’asile, par exemple avec le Salvador : https://psmag.com/social-justice/homeland-security-uses-foreign-databases-to-monitor-gang-activity

    Reçu via email le 16.07.2019 de @pascaline

    #USA #Etats-Unis #Dublin #Dublin_façon_USA #loi #Dublin_aux_USA #législation #asile #migrations #réfugiés #El_Salvador

    • Trump Administration Implementing ’3rd Country’ Rule On Migrants Seeking Asylum

      The Trump administration is moving forward with a tough new asylum rule in its campaign to slow the flow of Central American migrants crossing the U.S.-Mexico border. Asylum-seeking immigrants who pass through a third country en route to the U.S. must first apply for refugee status in that country rather than at the U.S. border.

      The restriction will likely face court challenges, opening a new front in the battle over U.S. immigration policies.

      The interim final rule will take effect immediately after it is published in the Federal Register on Tuesday, according to the departments of Justice and Homeland Security.

      The new policy applies specifically to the U.S.-Mexico border, saying that “an alien who enters or attempts to enter the United States across the southern border after failing to apply for protection in a third country outside the alien’s country of citizenship, nationality, or last lawful habitual residence through which the alien transited en route to the United States is ineligible for asylum.”

      “Until Congress can act, this interim rule will help reduce a major ’pull’ factor driving irregular migration to the United States,” Homeland Security acting Secretary Kevin K. McAleenan said in a statement about the new rule.

      The American Civil Liberties Union said it planned to file a lawsuit to try to stop the rule from taking effect.

      “This new rule is patently unlawful and we will sue swiftly,” Lee Gelernt, deputy director of the ACLU’s national Immigrants’ Rights Project, said in a statement.

      Gelernt accused the Trump administration of “trying to unilaterally reverse our country’s legal and moral commitment to protect those fleeing danger.”

      The strict policy shift would likely bring new pressures and official burdens on Mexico and Guatemala, countries through which migrants and refugees often pass on their way to the U.S.

      On Sunday, Guatemala’s government pulled out of a meeting between President Jimmy Morales and Trump that had been scheduled for Monday, citing ongoing legal questions over whether the country could be deemed a “safe third country” for migrants who want to reach the U.S.

      Hours after the U.S. announced the rule on Monday, Mexican Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard said it was a unilateral move that will not affect Mexican citizens.

      “Mexico does not agree with measures that limit asylum and refugee status for those who fear for their lives or safety, and who fear persecution in their country of origin,” Ebrard said.

      Ebrard said Mexico will maintain its current policies, reiterating the country’s “respect for the human rights of all people, as well as for its international commitments in matters of asylum and political refuge.”

      According to a DHS news release, the U.S. rule would set “a new bar to eligibility” for anyone seeking asylum. It also allows exceptions in three limited cases:

      “1) an alien who demonstrates that he or she applied for protection from persecution or torture in at least one of the countries through which the alien transited en route to the United States, and the alien received a final judgment denying the alien protection in such country;

      ”(2) an alien who demonstrates that he or she satisfies the definition of ’victim of a severe form of trafficking in persons’ provided in 8 C.F.R. § 214.11; or,

      “(3) an alien who has transited en route to the United States through only a country or countries that were not parties to the 1951 Convention relating to the Status of Refugees, the 1967 Protocol, or the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment.”

      The DHS release describes asylum as “a discretionary benefit offered by the United States Government to those fleeing persecution on account of race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular social group, or political opinion.”

      The departments of Justice and Homeland Security are publishing the 58-page asylum rule as the Trump administration faces criticism over conditions at migrant detention centers at the southern border, as well as its “remain in Mexico” policy that requires asylum-seekers who are waiting for a U.S. court date to do so in Mexico rather than in the U.S.

      In a statement about the new rule, U.S. Attorney General William Barr said that current U.S. asylum rules have been abused, and that the large number of people trying to enter the country has put a strain on the system.

      Barr said the number of cases referred to the Department of Justice for proceedings before an immigration judge “has risen exponentially, more than tripling between 2013 and 2018.” The attorney general added, “Only a small minority of these individuals, however, are ultimately granted asylum.”

      https://www.npr.org/2019/07/15/741769333/u-s-sets-new-asylum-rule-telling-potential-refugees-to-apply-elsewhere

    • Le journal The New Yorker : Trump est prêt à signer un accord majeur pour envoyer à l’avenir les demandeurs d’asile au Guatemala

      L’article fait état d’un projet de #plate-forme_externalisée pour examiner les demandes de personnes appréhendées aux frontières US, qui rappelle à la fois une proposition britannique (jamais concrétisée) de 2003 de créer des processing centers extra-européens et la #Pacific_solution australienne, qui consiste à déporter les demandeurs d’asile « illégaux » de toute nationalité dans des pays voisins. Et l’article évoque la « plus grande et la plus troublante des questions : comment le Guatemala pourrait-il faire face à un afflux si énorme de demandeurs ? » Peut-être en demandant conseil aux autorités libyennes et à leurs amis européens ?

      –-> Message reçu d’Alain Morice via la mailling-list Migreurop.

      Trump Is Poised to Sign a Radical Agreement to Send Future Asylum Seekers to Guatemala

      Early next week, according to a D.H.S. official, the Trump Administration is expected to announce a major immigration deal, known as a safe-third-country agreement, with Guatemala. For weeks, there have been reports that negotiations were under way between the two countries, but, until now, none of the details were official. According to a draft of the agreement obtained by The New Yorker, asylum seekers from any country who either show up at U.S. ports of entry or are apprehended while crossing between ports of entry could be sent to seek asylum in Guatemala instead. During the past year, tens of thousands of migrants, the vast majority of them from Central America, have arrived at the U.S. border seeking asylum each month. By law, the U.S. must give them a chance to bring their claims before authorities, even though there’s currently a backlog in the immigration courts of roughly a million cases. The Trump Administration has tried a number of measures to prevent asylum seekers from entering the country—from “metering” at ports of entry to forcing people to wait in Mexico—but, in every case, international obligations held that the U.S. would eventually have to hear their asylum claims. Under this new arrangement, most of these migrants will no longer have a chance to make an asylum claim in the U.S. at all. “We’re talking about something much bigger than what the term ‘safe third country’ implies,” someone with knowledge of the deal told me. “We’re talking about a kind of transfer agreement where the U.S. can send any asylum seekers, not just Central Americans, to Guatemala.”

      From the start of the Trump Presidency, Administration officials have been fixated on a safe-third-country policy with Mexico—a similar accord already exists with Canada—since it would allow the U.S. government to shift the burden of handling asylum claims farther south. The principle was that migrants wouldn’t have to apply for asylum in the U.S. because they could do so elsewhere along the way. But immigrants-rights advocates and policy experts pointed out that Mexico’s legal system could not credibly take on that responsibility. “If you’re going to pursue a safe-third-country agreement, you have to be able to say ‘safe’ with a straight face,” Doris Meissner, a former commissioner of the Immigration and Naturalization Service, told me. Until very recently, the prospect of such an agreement—not just with Mexico but with any other country in Central America—seemed far-fetched. Yet last month, under the threat of steep tariffs on Mexican goods, Trump strong-armed the Mexican government into considering it. Even so, according to a former Mexican official, the government of Andrés Manuel López Obrador is stalling. “They are trying to fight this,” the former official said. What’s so striking about the agreement with Guatemala, however, is that it goes even further than the terms the U.S. sought in its dealings with Mexico. “This is a whole new level,” the person with knowledge of the agreement told me. “In my read, it looks like even those who have never set foot in Guatemala can potentially be sent there.”

      At this point, there are still more questions than answers about what the agreement with Guatemala will mean in practice. A lot will still have to happen before it goes into force, and the terms aren’t final. The draft of the agreement doesn’t provide much clarity on how it will be implemented—another person with knowledge of the agreement said, “This reads like it was drafted by someone’s intern”—but it does offer an exemption for Guatemalan migrants, which might be why the government of Jimmy Morales, a U.S. ally, seems willing to sign on. Guatemala is currently in the midst of Presidential elections; next month, the country will hold a runoff between two candidates, and the current front-runner has been opposed to this type of deal. The Morales government, however, still has six months left in office. A U.N.-backed anti-corruption body called the CICIG, which for years was funded by the U.S. and admired throughout the region, is being dismantled by Morales, whose own family has fallen under investigation for graft and financial improprieties. Signing an immigration deal “would get the Guatemalan government in the U.S.’s good graces,” Stephen McFarland, a former U.S. Ambassador to Guatemala, told me. “The question is, what would they intend to use that status for?” Earlier this week, after Morales announced that he would be meeting with Trump in Washington on Monday, three former foreign ministers of Guatemala petitioned the country’s Constitutional Court to block him from signing the agreement. Doing so, they said, “would allow the current president of the republic to leave the future of our country mortgaged, without any responsibility.”

      The biggest, and most unsettling, question raised by the agreement is how Guatemala could possibly cope with such enormous demands. More people are leaving Guatemala now than any other country in the northern triangle of Central America. Rampant poverty, entrenched political corruption, urban crime, and the effects of climate change have made large swaths of the country virtually uninhabitable. “This is already a country in which the political and economic system can’t provide jobs for all its people,” McFarland said. “There are all these people, their own citizens, that the government and the political and economic system are not taking care of. To get thousands of citizens from other countries to come in there, and to take care of them for an indefinite period of time, would be very difficult.” Although the U.S. would provide additional aid to help the Guatemalan government address the influx of asylum seekers, it isn’t clear whether the country has the administrative capacity to take on the job. According to the person familiar with the safe-third-country agreement, “U.N.H.C.R. [the U.N.’s refugee agency] has not been involved” in the current negotiations. And, for Central Americans transferred to Guatemala under the terms of the deal, there’s an added security risk: many of the gangs Salvadorans and Hondurans are fleeing also operate in Guatemala.

      In recent months, the squalid conditions at borderland detention centers have provoked a broad political outcry in the U.S. At the same time, a worsening asylum crisis has been playing out south of the U.S. border, beyond the immediate notice of concerned Americans. There, the Trump Administration is quietly delivering on its promise to redraw American asylum practice. Since January, under a policy called the Migration Protection Protocols (M.P.P.), the U.S. government has sent more than fifteen thousand asylum seekers to Mexico, where they now must wait indefinitely as their cases inch through the backlogged American immigration courts. Cities in northern Mexico, such as Tijuana and Juarez, are filling up with desperate migrants who are exposed to violent crime, extortion, and kidnappings, all of which are on the rise.This week, as part of the M.P.P., the U.S. began sending migrants to Tamaulipas, one of Mexico’s most violent states and a stronghold for drug cartels that, for years, have brutalized migrants for money and for sport.

      Safe-third-country agreements are notoriously difficult to enforce. The logistics are complex, and the outcomes tend not to change the harried calculations of asylum seekers as they flee their homes. These agreements, according to a recent study by the Migration Policy Institute, are “unlikely to hold the key to solving the crisis unfolding at the U.S. southern border.” The Trump Administration has already cut aid to Central America, and the U.S. asylum system remains in dire need of improvement. But there’s also little question that the agreement with Guatemala will reduce the number of people who reach, and remain in, the U.S. If the President has made the asylum crisis worse, he’ll also be able to say he’s improving it—just as he can claim credit for the decline in the number of apprehensions at the U.S. border last month. That was the result of increased enforcement efforts by the Mexican government acting under U.S. pressure.

      There’s also no reason to expect that the Trump Administration will abandon its efforts to force the Mexicans into a safe-third-country agreement as well. “The Mexican government thought that the possibility of a safe-third-country agreement with Guatemala had fallen apart because of the elections there,” the former Mexican official told me. “The recent news caught top Mexican officials by surprise.” In the next month, the two countries will continue immigration talks, and, again, Mexico will face mounting pressure to accede to American demands. “The U.S. has used the agreement with Guatemala to convince the Mexicans to sign their own safe-third-country agreement,” the former official said. “Its argument is that the number of migrants Mexico will receive will be lower now.”

      https://www.newyorker.com/news/news-desk/trump-poised-to-sign-a-radical-agreement-to-send-future-asylum-seekers-to
      #externalisation

    • After Tariff Threat, Trump Says Guatemala Has Agreed to New Asylum Rules

      President Trump on Friday again sought to block migrants from Central America from seeking asylum, announcing an agreement with Guatemala to require people who travel through that country to seek refuge from persecution there instead of in the United States.

      American officials said the deal could go into effect within weeks, though critics vowed to challenge it in court, saying that Guatemala is itself one of the most dangerous countries in the world — hardly a refuge for those fleeing gangs and government violence.

      Mr. Trump had been pushing for a way to slow the flow of migrants streaming across the Mexican border and into the United States in recent months. This week, the president had threatened to impose tariffs on Guatemala, to tax money that Guatemalan migrants in the United States send back to family members, or to ban all travel from the country if the agreement were not signed.

      Joined in the Oval Office on Friday by Interior Minister Enrique Degenhart of Guatemala, Mr. Trump said the agreement would end what he has described as a crisis at the border, which has been overwhelmed by hundreds of thousands of families fleeing violence and persecution in El Salvador, Honduras and Guatemala.
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      “These are bad people,” Mr. Trump told reporters after a previously unannounced signing ceremony. He said the agreement would “end widespread abuse of the system and the crippling crisis on our border.”

      Officials did not release the English text of the agreement or provide many details about how it would be put into practice along the United States border with Mexico. Mr. Trump announced the deal in a Friday afternoon Twitter post that took Guatemalan politicians and leaders at immigration advocacy groups by surprise.

      Kevin K. McAleenan, the acting secretary of homeland security, described the document signed by the two countries as a “safe third” agreement that would make migrants ineligible for protection in the United States if they had traveled through Guatemala and did not first apply for asylum there.

      Instead of being returned home, however, the migrants would be sent back to Guatemala, which under the agreement would be designated as a safe place for them to live.

      “They would be removable, back to Guatemala, if they want to seek an asylum claim,” said Mr. McAleenan, who likened the agreement to similar arrangements in Europe.
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      The move was the latest attempt by Mr. Trump to severely limit the ability of refugees to win protection in the United States. A new regulation that would have also banned most asylum seekers was blocked by a judge in San Francisco earlier this week.

      But the Trump administration is determined to do everything it can to stop the flow of migrants at the border, which has infuriated the president. Mr. Trump has frequently told his advisers that he sees the border situation as evidence of a failure to make good on his campaign promise to seal the border from dangerous immigrants.

      More than 144,200 migrants were taken into custody at the southwest border in May, the highest monthly total in 13 years. Arrests at the border declined by 28 percent in June after efforts in Mexico and the United States to stop migrants from Central America.

      Late Friday, the Guatemalan government released the Spanish text of the deal, which is called a “cooperative agreement regarding the examination of protection claims.” In an earlier statement announcing the agreement, the government had referred to an implementation plan for Salvadorans and Hondurans. It does not apply to Guatemalans who request asylum in the United States.

      By avoiding any mention of a “safe third country” agreement, President Jimmy Morales of Guatemala appeared to be trying to sidestep a recent court ruling blocking him from signing a deal with the United States without the approval of his country’s congress.

      Mr. Morales will leave office in January. One of the candidates running to replace him, the conservative Alejandro Giammattei, said that it was “irresponsible” for Mr. Morales to have agreed to an accord without revealing its contents first.

      “It is up to the next government to attend to this negotiation,” Mr. Giammattei wrote on Twitter. His opponent, Sandra Torres, had opposed any safe-third-country agreement when it first appeared that Mr. Morales was preparing to sign one.

      Legal groups in the United States said the immediate effect of the agreement will not be clear until the administration releases more details. But based on the descriptions of the deal, they vowed to ask a judge to block it from going into effect.

      “Guatemala can neither offer a safe nor fair and full process, and nobody could plausibly argue otherwise,” said Lee Gelernt, an American Civil Liberties Union lawyer who argued against other recent efforts to limit asylum. “There’s no way they have the capacity to provide a full and fair procedure, much less a safe one.”

      American asylum laws require that virtually all migrants who arrive at the border must be allowed to seek refuge in the United States, but the law allows the government to quickly deport migrants to a country that has signed a “safe third” agreement.

      But critics said that the law clearly requires the “safe third” country to be a truly safe place where migrants will not be in danger. And it requires that the country have the ability to provide a “full and fair” system of protections that can accommodate asylum seekers who are sent there. Critics insisted that Guatemala meets neither requirement.

      They also noted that the State Department’s own country condition reports on Guatemala warn about rampant gang activity and say that murder is common in the country, which has a police force that is often ineffective at best.

      Asked whether Guatemala is a safe country for refugees, Mr. McAleenan said it was unfair to tar an entire country, noting that there are also places in the United States that are not safe.

      In 2018, the most recent year for which data is available, 116,808 migrants apprehended at the southwest border were from Guatemala, while 77,128 were from Honduras and 31,636 were from El Salvador.

      “It’s legally ludicrous and totally dangerous,” said Eleanor Acer, the senior director for refugee protection at Human Rights First. “The United States is trying to send people back to a country where their lives would be at risk. It sets a terrible example for the rest of the world.”

      Administration officials traveled to Guatemala in recent months, pushing officials there to sign the agreement, according to an administration official. But negotiations broke down in the past two weeks after Guatemala’s Constitutional Court ruled that Mr. Morales needed approval from lawmakers to make the deal with the United States.

      The ruling led Mr. Morales to cancel a planned trip in mid-July to sign the agreement, leaving Mr. Trump fuming.

      “Now we are looking at the BAN, Tariffs, Remittance Fees, or all of the above,” Mr. Trump wrote on Twitter on July 23.

      Friday’s action suggests that the president’s threats, which provoked concern among Guatemala’s business community, were effective.

      https://www.nytimes.com/2019/07/26/world/americas/trump-guatemala-asylum.html

    • Este es el acuerdo migratorio firmado entre Guatemala y Estados Unidos

      Prensa Libre obtuvo en primicia el acuerdo que Guatemala firmó con Estados Unidos para detener la migración desde el Triángulo Norte de Centroamérica.

      Estados Unidos y Guatemala firmaron este 26 de julio un “acuerdo de asilo”, después de que esta semana el presidente Donald Trump amenazara a Guatemala con imponer aranceles para presionar por la negociación del convenio.

      Según Trump, el acuerdo “va a dar seguridad a los demandantes de asilo legítimos y a va detener los fraudes y abusos en el sistema de asilo”.

      El acuerdo fue firmado en el Despacho Oval de la Casa Blanca entre Kevin McAleenan, secretario interino de Seguridad Nacional de los Estados Unidos, y Enrique Degenhart, ministro de Gobernación de Guatemala.

      “Hace mucho tiempo que hemos estado trabajando con Guatemala y ahora podemos hacerlo de la manera correcta”, dijo el mandatario estadounidense.

      Este es el contenido íntegro del acuerdo:

      ACUERDO ENTRE EL GOBIERNO DE LOS ESTADOS UNIDOS DE AMÉRICA Y EL GOBIERNO DE LA REPÚBLICA DE GUATEMALA RELATIVO A LA COOPERACIÓN RESPECTO AL EXAMEN DE SOLICITUDES DE PROTECCIÓN

      EL GOBIERNO DE LOS ESTADOS UNIDOS DE AMÉRICA Y EL GOBIERNO DE LA REPÚBLICA DE GUATEMALA, en lo sucesivo de forma individual una “Parte” o colectivamente “las Partes”,

      CONSIDERANDO que Guatemala norma sus relaciones con otros países de conformidad con principios, reglas y prácticas internacionales con el propósito de contribuir al mantenimiento de la paz y la libertad, al respeto y defensa de los derechos humanos, y al fortalecimiento de los procesos democráticos e instituciones internacionales que garanticen el beneficio mutuo y equitativo entre los Estados; considerando por otro lado, que Guatemala mantendrá relaciones de amistad, solidaridad y cooperación con aquellos Estados cuyo desarrollo económico, social y cultural sea análogo al de Guatemala, como el derecho de las personas a migrar y su necesidad de protección;

      CONSIDERANDO que en la actualidad Guatemala incorpora en su legislación interna leyes migratorias dinámicas que obligan a Guatemala a reconocer el derecho de toda persona a emigrar o inmigrar, por lo que cualquier migrante puede entrar, permanecer, transitar, salir y retornar a su territorio nacional conforme a su legislación nacional; considerando, asimismo, que en situaciones no previstas por la legislación interna se debe aplicar la norma que más favorezca al migrante, siendo que por analogía se le debería dar abrigo y cuidado temporal a las personas que deseen ingresar de manera legal al territorio nacional; considerando que por estos motivos es necesario promover acuerdos de cooperación con otros Estados que respeten los mismos principios descritos en la política migratoria de Guatemala, reglamentada por la Autoridad Migratoria Nacional;

      CONSIDERANDO que Guatemala es parte de la Convención sobre el Estatuto de los Refugiados de 1951, celebrada en Ginebra el 28 de julio de 1951 (la “Convención de 1951″) y del Protocolo sobre el Estatuto de los Refugiados, firmado en Nueva York el 31 de enero de 1967 (el “Protocolo de 1967′), del cual los Estados Unidos son parte, y reafirmando la obligación de las partes de proporcionar protección a refugiados que cumplen con los requisitos y que se encuentran físicamente en sus respectivos territorios, de conformidad con sus obligaciones según esos instrumentos y sujetos . a las respectivas leyes, tratados y declaraciones de las Partes;

      RECONOCIENDO especialmente la obligación de las Partes respecto a cumplir el principio de non-refoulement de no devolución, tal como se desprende de la Convención de 1951 y del Protocolo de 1967, así como la Convención contra la Tortura y Otros Tratos o Penas Crueles, Inhumanos o Degradantes, firmada en Nueva York el 10 de diciembre de 1984 (la “Convención contra la Tortura”), con sujeción a las respectivas reservas, entendimientos y declaraciones de las Partes y reafirmando sus respectivas obligaciones de fomentar y proteger los derechos humanos y las libertades fundamentales en consonancia con sus obligaciones en el ámbito internacional;

      RECONOCIENDO y respetando las obligaciones de cada Parte de conformidad con sus leyes y políticas nacionales y acuerdos y arreglos internacionales;

      DESTACANDO que los Estados Unidos de América y Guatemala ofrecen sistemas de protección de refugiados que son coherentes con sus obligaciones conforme a la Convención de 1951 y/o el Protocolo de 1967;

      DECIDIDOS a mantener el estatuto de refugio o de protección temporal equivalente, como medida esencial en la protección de los refugiados o asilados, y al mismo tiempo deseando impedir el fraude en el proceso de solicitud de refugio o asilo, acción que socava su legitimo propósito; y decididos a fortalecer la integridad del proceso oficial para solicitar el estatuto de refugio o asilo, así como el respaldo público a dicho proceso;

      CONSCIENTES de que la distribución de la responsabilidad relacionada con solicitudes de protección debe garantizar en la práctica que se identifique a las personas que necesitan protección y que se eviten las violaciones del principio básico de no devolución; y, por lo tanto, comprometidos con salvaguardar para cada solicitante del estatuto de refugio o asilo que reúna las condiciones necesarias el acceso a un procedimiento completo e imparcial para determinar la solicitud;

      ACUERDAN lo siguiente:

      ARTÍCULO 1

      A efectos del presente Acuerdo:

      1. “Solicitud de protección” significa la solicitud de una persona de cualquier nacionalidad, al gobierno de una de las Partes para recibir protección conforme a sus respectivas obligaciones institucionales derivadas de la Convención de 1951, del Protocolo de 1967 o de la Convención contra la Tortura, y de conformidad con las leyes y políticas respectivas de las Partes que dan cumplimiento a esas obligaciones internacionales, así como para recibir cualquier otro tipo de protección temporal equivalente disponible conforme al derecho migratorio de la parte receptora.

      2. “Solicitante de protección” significa cualquier persona que presenta una solicitud de protección en el territorio de una de las partes.

      3. “Sistema para determinar la protección” significa el conjunto de políticas, leyes, prácticas administrativas y judiciales que el gobierno de cada parte emplea para decidir respecto de las solicitudes de protección.

      4. “Menor no acompañado” significa un solicitante de protección que no ha cumplido los dieciocho (18) años de edad y cuyo padre, madre o tutor legal no está presente ni disponible para proporcionar atención y custodia presencial en los Estados Unidos de América o en Guatemala, donde se encuentre el menor no acompañado.

      5. En el caso de la inmigración a Guatemala, las políticas respecto de leyes y migración abordan el derecho de las personas a entrar, permanecer, transitar y salir de su territorio de conformidad con sus leyes internas y los acuerdos y arreglos internacionales, y permanencia migratoria significa permanencia por un plazo de tiempo autorizado de acuerdo al estatuto migratorio otorgado a las personas.

      ARTÍCULO 2

      El presente Acuerdo no aplica a los solicitantes de protección que son ciudadanos o nacionales de Guatemala; o quienes, siendo apátridas, residen habitualmente en Guatemala.

      ARTÍCULO 3

      1. Para garantizar que los solicitantes de protección trasladados a Guatemala por los Estados Unidos tengan acceso a un sistema para determinar la protección, Guatemala no retornará ni expulsará a solicitantes de protección en Guatemala, a menos que el solicitante abandone la ‘solicitud o que esta sea denegada a través de una decisión administrativa.

      2. Durante el proceso de traslado, las personas sujetas al presente Acuerdo serán responsabilidad de los Estados Unidos hasta que finalice el proceso de traslado.

      ARTÍCULO 4

      1. La responsabilidad de determinar y concluir en su territorio solicitudes de protección recaerá en los Estados Unidos, cuando los Estados Unidos establezcan que esa persona:

      a. es un menor no acompañado; o

      b. llegó al territorio de los Estados Unidos:

      i. con una visa emitida de forma válida u otro documento de admisión válido, que no sea de tránsito, emitido por los Estados Unidos; o

      ii. sin que los Estados Unidos de América le exigiera obtener una visa.

      2. No obstante el párrafo 1 de este artículo, Guatemala evaluará las solicitudes de protección una por una, de acuerdo a lo establecido y autorizado por la autoridad competente en materia migratoria en sus políticas y leyes migratorias y en su territorio, de las personas que cumplen los requisitos necesarios conforme al presente Acuerdo, y que llegan a los Estados Unidos a un puerto de entrada o entre puertos de entrada, en la fecha efectiva del presente Acuerdo o posterior a ella. Guatemala evaluará la solicitud de protección, conforme al plan de implementación inicial y los procedimientos operativos estándar a los que se hace referencia en el artículo 7, apartados 1 y 5.

      3. Las Partes aplicarán el presente Acuerdo respecto a menores no acompañados de conformidad con sus respectivas leyes nacionales,

      4. Las Partes contarán con procedimientos para garantizar que los traslados de los Estados Unidos a Guatemala de las personas objeto del presente Acuerdo sean compatibles con sus obligaciones, leyes nacionales e internacionales y políticas migratorias respectivas.

      5. Los Estados Unidos tomarán la decisión final de que una persona satisface los requisitos para una excepción en virtud de los artículos 4 y 5 del presente Acuerdo.

      ARTÍCULO 5

      No obstante cualquier disposición del presente Acuerdo, cualquier parte podrá, según su propio criterio, examinar cualquier solicitud de protección que se haya presentado a esa Parte cuando decida que es de su interés público hacerlo.

      ARTÍCULO 6

      Las Partes podrán:

      1. Intercambiar información cuando sea necesario para la implementación efectiva del presente Acuerdo con sujeción a las leyes y reglamentación nacionales. Dicha información no será divulgada por el país receptor excepto de conformidad con sus leyes y reglamentación nacionales.

      2. Las Partes podrán intercambiar de forma habitual información respecto á leyes, reglamentación y prácticas relacionadas con sus respectivos sistemas para determinar la protección migratoria.

      ARTÍCULO 7

      1. Las Partes elaborarán procedimientos operativos estándar para asistir en la implementación del presente Acuerdo. Estos procedimientos incorporarán disposiciones para notificar por adelantado, a Guatemala, el traslado de cualquier persona conforme al presente Acuerdo. Los Estados Unidos colaborarán con Guatemala para identificar a las personas idóneas para ser trasladadas al territorio de Guatemala.

      2. Los procedimientos operativos incorporarán mecanismos para solucionar controversias que respeten la interpretación e implementación de los términos del presente Acuerdo. Los casos no previstos que no puedan solucionarse a través de estos mecanismos serán resueltos a través de la vía diplomática.

      3. Los Estados Unidos prevén cooperar para fortalecer las capacidades institucionales de Guatemala.

      4. Las Partes acuerdan evaluar regularmente el presente Acuerdo y su implementación, para subsanar las deficiencias encontradas. Las Partes realizarán las evaluaciones conjuntamente, siendo la primera dentro de un plazo máximo de tres (3) meses a partir de la fecha de entrada en operación del Acuerdo y las siguientes evaluaciones dentro de los mismos plazos. Las Partes podrán invitar, de común acuerdo, a otras organizaciones pertinentes con conocimientos especializados sobre el tema a participar en la evaluación inicial y/o cooperar para el cumplimiento del presente Acuerdo.

      5. Las Partes prevén completar un plan de implementación inicial, que incorporará gradualmente, y abordará, entre otros: a) los procedimientos necesarios para llevar a cabo el traslado de personas conforme al presente Acuerdo; b) la cantidad o número de personas a ser trasladadas; y c) las necesidades de capacidad institucional. Las Partes planean hacer operativo el presente Acuerdo al finalizarse un plan de implementación gradual.

      ARTÍCULO 8

      1. El presente Acuerdo entrará en vigor por medio de un canje de notas entre las partes en el que se indique que cada parte ha cumplido con los procedimientos jurídicos nacionales necesarios para que el Acuerdo entre en vigor. El presente Acuerdo tendrá una vigencia de dos (2) años y podrá renovarse antes de su vencimiento a través de un canje de notas.

      2. Cualquier Parte podrá dar por terminado el presente Acuerdo por medio de una notificación por escrito a la otra Parte con tres (3) meses de antelación.

      3. Cualquier parte podrá, inmediatamente después de notificar a la otra parte por escrito, suspender por un periodo inicial de hasta tres (3) meses la implementación del presente Acuerdo. Esta suspensión podrá extenderse por periodos adicionales de hasta tres (3) meses por medio de una notificación por escrito a la otra parte. Cualquier parte podrá, con el consentimiento por escrito de la otra, suspender cualquier parte del presente Acuerdo.

      4. Las Partes podrán, por escrito y de mutuo acuerdo, realizar cualquier modificación o adición al presente Acuerdo. Estas entrarán en vigor de conformidad con los procedimientos jurídicos pertinentes de cada Parte y la modificación o adición constituirá parte integral del presente Acuerdo.

      5. Ninguna disposición del presente Acuerdo deberá interpretarse de manera que obligue a las Partes a erogar o comprometer fondos.

      EN FE DE LO CUAL, los abajo firmantes, debidamente autorizados por sus respectivos gobiernos, firman el presente Acuerdo.

      HECHO el 26 de julio de 2019, por duplicado en los idiomas inglés y español, siendo ambos textos auténticos.

      POR EL GOBIERNO DE LOS ESTADOS UNIDOS DE AMÉRICA: Kevin K. McAleenan, Secretario Interino de Seguridad Nacional.

      POR EL GOBIERNO DE LA REPÚBLICA DE GUATEMALA: Enrique A. Degenhart Asturias, Ministro de Gobernación.

      https://www.prensalibre.com/guatemala/migrantes/este-es-el-acuerdo-migratorio-firmado-entre-guatemala-y-estados-unidos

    • Washington signe un accord sur le droit d’asile avec le Guatemala

      Sous la pression du président américain, le Guatemala devient un « pays tiers sûr », où les migrants de passage vers les Etats-Unis doivent déposer leurs demandes d’asile.

      Sous la pression de Donald Trump qui menaçait de lui infliger des sanctions commerciales, le Guatemala a accepté vendredi 26 juillet de devenir un « pays tiers sûr » pour contribuer à réduire le nombre de demandes d’asile aux Etats-Unis. L’accord, qui a été signé en grande pompe dans le bureau ovale de la Maison blanche, en préfigure d’autres, a assuré le président américain, qui a notamment cité le Mexique.

      Faute d’avoir obtenu du Congrès le financement du mur qu’il souhaitait construire le long de la frontière avec le Mexique, Donald Trump a changé de stratégie en faisant pression sur les pays d’Amérique centrale pour qu’ils l’aident à réduire le flux de migrants arrivant aux Etats-Unis, qui a atteint un niveau record sous sa présidence.

      Une personne qui traverse un « pays tiers sûr » doit déposer sa demande d’asile dans ce pays et non dans son pays de destination. Sans employer le terme « pays tiers sûr », le gouvernement guatémaltèque a précisé dans un communiqué que l’accord conclu avec les Etats-Unis s’appliquerait aux réfugiés originaires du Honduras et du Salvador.

      Contreparties pour les travailleurs agricoles

      S’adressant à la presse devant la Maison blanche, le président américain a indiqué que les ouvriers agricoles guatémaltèques auraient en contrepartie un accès privilégié aux fermes aux Etats-Unis.

      Le président guatémaltèque Jimmy Morales devait signer l’accord de « pays tiers sûr » la semaine dernière mais il avait été contraint de reculer après que la Cour constitutionnelle avait jugé qu’il ne pouvait pas prendre un tel engagement sans l’accord du Parlement, ce qui avait provoqué la fureur de Donald Trump.

      Invoquant la nécessité d’éviter des « répercussions sociales et économiques », le gouvernement guatémaltèque a indiqué qu’un accord serait signé dans les prochains jours avec Washington pour faciliter l’octroi de visas de travail agricole temporaires aux ressortissants guatémaltèques. Il a dit espérer que cette mesure serait ultérieurement étendue aux secteurs de la construction et des services.

      Les Etats-Unis sont confrontés à une flambée du nombre de migrants qui cherchent à franchir sa frontière sud, celle qui les séparent du Mexique. En juin, les services de police aux frontières ont arrêté 104 000 personnes qui cherchaient à entrer illégalement aux Etats-Unis. Ils avaient été 144 000 le mois précédent.

      https://www.lemonde.fr/international/article/2019/07/27/washington-signe-un-accord-sur-le-droit-d-asile-avec-le-guatemala_5493979_32
      #agriculture #ouvriers_agricoles #travail #fermes

    • Migrants, pressions sur le Mexique

      Sous la pression des États-Unis, le Mexique fait la chasse aux migrants sur son territoire, et les empêche d’avancer vers le nord. Au mois de juin, les autorités ont arrêté près de 24 000 personnes sans papiers.

      Debout sur son radeau, Edwin maugrée en regardant du coin de l’œil la vingtaine de militaires de la Garde Nationale mexicaine postés sous les arbres, côté mexicain. « C’est à cause d’eux si les affaires vont mal », bougonne le jeune Guatémaltèque en poussant son radeau à l’aide d’une perche. « Depuis qu’ils sont là, plus personne ne peut passer au Mexique ».

      Les eaux du fleuve Suchiate, qui sépare le Mexique du Guatemala, sont étrangement calmes depuis le mois de juin. Fini le ballet incessant des petits radeaux de fortune, où s’entassaient, pêle-mêle, villageois, commerçants et migrants qui se rendaient au Mexique. « Mais ça ne change rien, les migrants traversent plus loin », sourit le jeune homme.

      La stratégie du président américain Donald Trump pour contraindre son voisin du sud à réduire les flux migratoires en direction des États-Unis a mis le gouvernement mexicain aux abois : pour éviter une nouvelle fois la menace de l’instauration de frais de douanes de 5 % sur les importations mexicaines, le gouvernement d’Andrés Manuel López Obrador a déployé dans l’urgence 6 500 éléments de la Garde Nationale à la frontière sud du Mexique.
      Des pots-de-vin lors des contrôles

      Sur les routes, les opérations de contrôle sont partout. « Nous avons été arrêtés à deux reprises par l’armée », explique Natalia, entourée de ses garçons de 11 ans, 8 ans et 3 ans. Cette Guatémaltèque s’est enfuie de son village avec son mari et ses enfants, il y a dix jours. Son époux, témoin protégé dans le procès d’un groupe criminel, a été menacé de mort. « Au premier contrôle, nous leur avons donné 1 500 pesos (NDLR, 70 €), au deuxième 2 500 pesos (118 €), pour qu’ils nous laissent partir », explique la mère de famille, assise sous le préau de l’auberge du Père César Augusto Cañaveral, l’une des deux auberges qui accueillent les migrants à Tapachula.

      Conçu pour 120 personnes, l’établissement héberge actuellement plus de 300 personnes, dont une centaine d’enfants en bas âge. « On est face à une politique anti-migratoire de plus en plus violente et militarisée, se désole le Père Cañaveral. C’est devenu une véritable chasse à l’homme dehors, alors je leur dis de sortir le moins possible pour éviter les arrestations ». Celles-ci ont en effet explosé depuis l’ultimatum du président des États-Unis : du 1er au 24 juin, l’Institut National de Migration (INM) a arrêté près de 24 000 personnes en situation irrégulière, soit 1 000 personnes détenues par jour en moyenne, et en a expulsé plus de 17 000, essentiellement des Centraméricains. Du jamais vu.
      Des conditions de détention « indignes »

      À Tapachula, les migrants arrêtés sont entassés dans le centre de rétention Siglo XXI. À quelques mètres de l’entrée de cette forteresse de béton, Yannick a le regard vide et fatigué. « Il y avait tellement de monde là-dedans que ma fille y est tombée malade », raconte cet Angolais âgé de 33 ans, sa fille de 3 ans somnolant dans ses bras. « Ils viennent de nous relâcher car ils ne vont pas nous renvoyer en Afrique, ajoute-il. Heureusement, car à l’intérieur on dort par terre ». « Les conditions dans ce centre sont indignes », dénonce Claudia León Aug, coordinatrice du Service jésuite des réfugiés pour l’Amérique latine, qui a visité à plusieurs reprises le centre de rétention Siglo XXI. « La nourriture est souvent avariée, les enfants tombent malades, les bébés n’ont droit qu’à une seule couche par jour, et on a même recensé des cas de tortures et d’agressions ».

      Tapachula est devenu un cul-de-sac pour des milliers de migrants. Ils errent dans les rues de la ville, d’hôtel en d’hôtel, ou louent chez l’habitant, faute de pouvoir avancer vers le nord. Les compagnies de bus, sommées de participer à l’effort national, demandent systématiquement une pièce d’identité en règle. « On ne m’a pas laissé monter dans le bus en direction de Tijuana », se désole Elvis, un Camerounais de 34 ans qui rêve de se rendre au Canada.

      Il sort de sa poche un papier tamponné par les autorités mexicaines, le fameux laissez-passer que délivrait l’Institut National de Migration aux migrants extra-continentaux, pour qu’ils traversent le Mexique en 20 jours afin de gagner la frontière avec les États-Unis. « Regardez, ils ont modifié le texte, maintenant il est écrit que je ne peux pas sortir de Tapachula », accuse le jeune homme, dépité, avant de se rasseoir sur le banc de la petite cour de son hôtel décati dans la périphérie de Tapachula. « La situation est chaotique, les gens sont bloqués ici et les autorités ne leur donnent aucune information, pour les décourager encore un peu plus », dénonce Salvador Lacruz, coordinateur au Centre des Droits humains Centro Fray Matías de Córdova.
      Explosion du nombre des demandes d’asile au Mexique

      Face à la menace des arrestations et des expulsions, de plus en plus de migrants choisissent de demander l’asile au Mexique. Dans le centre-ville de Tapachula, la Commission mexicaine d’aide aux réfugiés (COMAR), est prise d’assaut dès 4 heures du matin par les demandeurs d’asile. « On m’a dit de venir avec tous les documents qui prouvent que je suis en danger de mort dans mon pays », explique Javier, un Hondurien de 34 ans qui a fait la queue une partie de la nuit pour ne pas rater son rendez-vous.

      Son fils de 9 ans est assis sur ses genoux. « J’ai le certificat de décès de mon père et celui de mon frère. Ils ont été assassinés pour avoir refusé de donner de l’argent aux maras », explique-t-il, une pochette en plastique dans les mains. « Le prochain sur la liste, c’est moi, c’est pour ça que je suis parti pour les États-Unis, mais je vois que c’est devenu très difficile, alors je me pose ici, ensuite, on verra ».

      Les demandes d’asile au Mexique ont littéralement explosé : 31 000 pour les six premiers mois de 2019, c’est trois fois plus qu’en 2018 à la même période, et juin a été particulièrement élevé, avec 70 % de demandes en plus par rapport à janvier. La tendance devrait se poursuivre du fait de la décision prise le 15 juillet dernier par le président américain, que toute personne « entrant par la frontière sud des États-Unis » et souhaitant demander l’asile aux États-Unis le fasse, au préalable, dans un autre pays, transformant ainsi le Mexique, de facto, en « pays tiers sûr ».

      « Si les migrants savent que la seule possibilité de demander l’asile aux États-Unis, c’est de l’avoir obtenu au Mexique, ils le feront », observe Salvador Lacruz. Mais si certains s’accrochent à Tapachula, d’autres abandonnent. Jesús Roque, un Hondurien de 21 ans, « vient de signer » comme disent les migrants centraméricains en référence au programme de retour volontaire mis en place par le gouvernement mexicain. « C’est impossible d’aller plus au nord, je rentre chez moi », lâche-t-il.

      Comme lui, plus de 35 000 personnes sont rentrées dans leur pays, essentiellement des Honduriens et des Salvadoriens. À quelques mètres, deux femmes pressent le pas, agacées par la foule qui se presse devant les bureaux de la COMAR. « Qu’ils partent d’ici, vite ! », grogne l’une. Le mur tant désiré par Donald Trump s’est finalement érigé au Mexique en quelques semaines. Dans les esprits aussi.

      https://www.la-croix.com/Monde/Ameriques/Le-Mexique-verrouille-frontiere-sud-2019-08-01-1201038809

    • US Move Puts More Asylum Seekers at Risk. Expanded ‘#Remain_in_Mexico’ Program Undermines Due Process

      The Trump administration has drastically expanded its “Remain in Mexico” program while undercutting the rights of asylum seekers at the United States southern border, Human Rights Watch said today. Under the Migrant Protection Protocols (MPP) – known as the “Remain in Mexico” program – asylum seekers in the US are returned to cities in Mexico where there is a shortage of shelter and high crime rates while awaiting asylum hearings in US immigration court.

      Human Rights Watch found that asylum seekers face new or increased barriers to obtaining and communicating with legal counsel; increased closure of MPP court hearings to the public; and threats of kidnapping, extortion, and other violence while in Mexico.

      “The inherently inhumane ‘Remain in Mexico’ program is getting more abusive by the day,” said Ariana Sawyer, assistant US Program researcher at Human Rights Watch. “The program’s rapid growth in recent months has put even more people and families in danger in Mexico while they await an increasingly unfair legal process in the US.”

      The United States will begin sending all Central American asylum-seeking families to Mexico beginning the week of September 29, 2019 as part of the most recent expansion of the “Remain in Mexico” program, the Department of Homeland Security acting secretary, Kevin McAleenan, announced on September 23.

      Human Rights Watch concluded in a July 2019 report that the MPP program has had serious rights consequences for asylum seekers, including high – if not insurmountable – barriers to due process on their asylum claims in the United States and threats and physical violence in Mexico. Human Rights Watch recently spoke to seven asylum seekers, as well as 26 attorneys, migrant shelter operators, Mexican government officials, immigration court workers, journalists, and advocates. Human Rights Watch also observed court hearings for 71 asylum seekers in August and analyzed court filings, declarations, photographs, and media reports.

      “The [MPP] rules, which are never published, are constantly changing without advance notice,” said John Moore, an asylum attorney. “And so far, every change has had the effect of further restricting the already limited access we attorneys have with our clients.”

      Beyond the expanded program, which began in January, the US State Department has also begun funding a “voluntary return” program carried out by the United Nations-affiliated International Organization for Migration (IOM). The organization facilitates the transportation of asylum seekers forced to wait in Mexico back to their country of origin but does not notify US immigration judges. This most likely results in negative judgments against asylum seekers for not appearing in court, possibly resulting in a ban of up to 10 years on entering the US again, when they could have withdrawn their cases without penalty.

      Since July, the number of people being placed in the MPP program has almost tripled, from 15,079 as of June 24, to 40,033 as of September 7, according to the Mexican National Institute of Migration. The Trump administration has increased the number of asylum seekers it places in the program at ports of entry near San Diego and Calexico, California and El Paso, Texas, where the program had already been in place. The administration has also expanded the program to Laredo and Brownsville, Texas, even as the overall number of border apprehensions has declined.

      As of early August, more than 26,000 additional asylum seekers were waiting in Mexican border cities on unofficial lists to be processed by US Customs and Border Protection as part the US practice of “metering,” or of limiting the number of people who can apply for asylum each day by turning them back from ports of entry in violation of international law.

      In total, more than 66,000 asylum seekers are now in Mexico, forced to wait months or years for their cases to be decided in the US. Some have given up waiting and have attempted to cross illicitly in more remote and dangerous parts of the border, at times with deadly results.

      As problematic as the MPP program is, seeking asylum will likely soon become even more limited. On September 11, the Supreme Court temporarily allowed the Trump administration to carry out an asylum ban against anyone entering the country by land after July 16 who transited through a third country without applying for asylum there. This could affect at least 46,000 asylum seekers, placed in the MPP program or on a metering list after mid-July, according to calculations based on data from the Mexican National Institute of Migration. Asylum seekers may still be eligible for other forms of protection, but they carry much higher eligibility standards and do not provide the same level of relief.

      Human Rights Watch contacted the Department of Homeland Security and the US Justice Department’s Executive Office for Immigration Review with its findings and questions regarding the policy changes and developments but have not to date received a response. The US government should immediately cease returning asylum seekers to Mexico and instead ensure them meaningful access to full and fair asylum proceedings in US immigration courts, Human Rights Watch said. Congress should urgently act to cease funding the MPP program. The US should manage asylum-seeker arrivals through a genuine humanitarian response that includes fair determinations of an asylum seeker’s eligibility to remain in the US. The US should simultaneously pursue longer-term efforts to address the root causes of forced displacement in Central America.

      “The Trump administration seems intent on making the bad situation for asylum seekers even worse by further depriving them of due process rights,” Sawyer said. “The US Congress should step in and put an end to these mean-spirited attempts to undermine and destroy the US asylum system.”

      New Concerns over the MPP Program

      Increased Barriers to Legal Representation

      Everyone in the MPP has the right to an attorney at their own cost, but it has been nearly impossible for asylum seekers forced to remain in Mexico to get legal representation. Only about 1.3 percent of participants have legal representation, according to the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse at Syracuse University, a research center that examined US immigration court records through June 2019. In recent months, the US government has raised new barriers to obtaining representation and accessing counsel.

      When the Department of Homeland Security created the program, it issued guidance that:

      in order to facilitate access to counsel for aliens subject to return to Mexico under the MPP who will be transported to their immigration court hearings, [agents] will depart from the [port of entry] with the alien at a time sufficient to ensure arrival at the immigration court not later than one hour before his or her scheduled hearing time in order to afford the alien the opportunity to meet in-person with his or her legal representative.

      However, according to several attorneys Human Rights Watch interviewed in El Paso, Texas, and as Human Rights Watch observed on August 12 to 15 in El Paso Immigration Court, the Department of Homeland Security and the Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR), which manages the immigration court, have effectively barred attorneys from meeting with clients for the full hour before their client’s hearing begins. Rather than having free access to their clients, attorneys are now required to wait in the building lobby on a different level than the immigration court until the court administrator notifies security guards that attorneys may enter.

      As Human Rights Watch has previously noted, one hour is insufficient for adequate attorney consultation and preparation. Still, several attorneys said that this time in court was crucial. Immigration court is often the only place where asylum seekers forced to wait in Mexico can meet with attorneys since lawyers capable of representing them typically work in the US. Attorneys cannot easily travel to Mexico because of security and logistical issues. For MPP participants without attorneys, there are now also new barriers to getting basic information and assistance about the asylum application process.

      Human Rights Watch observed in May a coordinated effort by local nongovernmental organizations and attorneys in El Paso to perform know-your-rights presentations for asylum seekers without an attorney and to serve as “Friend of the Court,” at the judge’s discretion. The Executive Office for Immigration Review has recognized in the context of unaccompanied minors that a Friend of the Court “has a useful role to play in assisting the court and enhancing a respondent’s comprehension of proceedings.”

      The agency’s memos also say that, “Immigration Judges and court administrators remain encouraged to facilitate pro bono representation” because pro bono attorneys provide “respondents with welcome legal assistance and the judge with efficiencies that can only be realized when the respondent is represented.”

      To that end, immigration courts are encouraged to support “legal orientations and group rights presentations” by nonprofit organizations and attorneys.

      One of the attorneys involved in coordinating the various outreach programs at the El Paso Immigration Court said, however, that on June 24 the agency began barring all contact between third parties and asylum seekers without legal representation in both the courtroom and the lobby outside. This effectively ended all know-your-rights presentations and pro bono case screenings, though no new memo was issued. Armed guards now prevent attorneys in the US from interacting with MPP participants unless the attorneys have already filed official notices that they are representing specific participants.

      On July 8, the agency also began barring attorneys from serving as “Friend of the Court,” several attorneys told Human Rights Watch. No new memo has been issued on “Friend of the Court” either.

      In a July 16 email to an attorney obtained by Human Rights Watch, an agency spokesman, Rob Barnes, said that the agency shut down “Friend of the Court” and know-your-rights presentations to protect asylum seekers from misinformation after it “became aware that persons from organizations not officially recognized by EOIR...were entering EOIR space in El Paso.

      However, most of the attorneys and organizations now barred from performing know-your-rights presentations or serving as “Friend of the Court” in El Paso are listed on a form given to asylum seekers by the court of legal service providers, according to a copy of the form given to Human Rights Watch and attorneys and organizations coordinating those services.

      Closure of Immigration Court Hearings to the Public

      When Human Rights Watch observed court hearings in El Paso on May 8 to 10, the number of asylum seekers who had been placed in the MPP program and scheduled to appear in court was between 20 and 24 each day, with one judge hearing all of these cases in a single mass hearing. At the time, those numbers were considered high, and there was chaos and confusion as judges navigated a system that was never designed to provide hearings for people being kept outside the US.

      When Human Rights Watch returned to observe hearings just over three months later, four judges were hearing a total of about 250 cases a day, an average of over 60 cases for each judge. Asylum seekers in the program, who would previously have been allowed into the US to pursue their claims at immigration courts dispersed around the country, have been primarily funneled through courts in just two border cities, causing tremendous pressures on these courts and errors in the system. Some asylum seekers who appeared in court found their cases were not in the system or received conflicting instructions about where or when to appear.

      One US immigration official said the MPP program had “broken the courts,” Reuters reported.

      The Executive Office for Immigration Review has stated that immigration court hearings are generally supposed to be open to the public. The regulations indicate that immigration judges may make exceptions and limit or close hearings if physical facilities are inadequate; if there is a need to protect witnesses, parties, or the public interest; if an abused spouse or abused child is to appear; or if information under seal is to be presented.

      In recent weeks, however, journalists, attorneys, and other public observers have been barred from these courtrooms in El Paso by court administrators, security guards, and in at least one case, by a Department of Homeland Security attorney, who said that a courtroom was too full to allow a Human Rights Watch researcher entry.

      Would-be observers are now frequently told by the court administrator or security guards that there is “no room,” and that dockets are all “too full.”

      El Paso Immigration Court Administrator Rodney Buckmire told Human Rights Watch that hundreds of people receive hearings each day because asylum seekers “deserve their day in court,” but the chaos and errors in mass hearings, the lack of access to attorneys and legal advice, and the lack of transparency make clear that the MPP program is severely undermining due process.

      During the week of September 9, the Trump administration began conducting hearings for asylum seekers returned to Mexico in makeshift tent courts in Laredo and Brownsville, where judges are expected to preside via videoconference. At a September 11 news conference, DHS would not commit to allowing observers for those hearings, citing “heightened security measures” since the courts are located near the border. Both attorneys and journalists have since been denied entry to these port courts.

      Asylum Seekers Describe Risk of Kidnapping, Other Crimes

      As the MPP has expanded, increasing numbers of asylum seekers have been placed at risk of kidnapping and other crimes in Mexico.

      Two of the northern Mexican states to which asylum seekers were initially being returned under the program, Baja California and Chihuahua, are among those with the most homicides and other crimes in the country. Recent media reports have documented ongoing harm to asylum seekers there, including rape, kidnapping, sexual exploitation, assault, and other violent crimes.

      The program has also been expanded to Nuevo Laredo and Matamoros, both in the Mexican state of Tamaulipas, which is on the US State Department’s “do not travel” list. The media and aid workers have also reported that migrants there have experienced physical violence, sexual assault, kidnapping, and other abuses. There have been multiple reports in 2019 alone of migrants being kidnapped as they attempt to reach the border by bus.

      Jennifer Harbury, a human rights attorney and activist doing volunteer work with asylum-seekers on both sides of the border, collected sworn declarations that they had been victims of abuse from three asylum seekers who had been placed in the MPP program and bused by Mexican immigration authorities to Monterrey, Mexico, two and a half hours from the border. Human Rights Watch examined these declarations, in which asylum seekers reported robbery, extortion, and kidnapping, including by Mexican police.

      Expansion to Mexican Cities with Even Fewer Protections

      Harbury, who recently interviewed hundreds of migrants in Mexico, described asylum seekers sent to Nuevo Laredo as “fish in a barrel” because of their vulnerability to criminal organizations. She said that many of the asylum seekers she interviewed said they had been kidnapped or subjected to an armed assault at least once since they reached the border.

      Because Mexican officials are in many cases reportedly themselves involved in crimes against migrants, and because nearly 98 percent of crimes in Mexico go unsolved, crimes committed against migrants routinely go unpunished.

      In Matamoros, asylum seekers have no meaningful shelter access, said attorneys with Lawyers for Good Government (L4GG) who were last there from August 22 to 26. Instead, more than 500 asylum seekers were placed in an encampment in a plaza near the port of entry to the US, where they were sleeping out in the open, despite temperatures of over 100 degrees Fahrenheit. Henriette Vinet-Martin, a lawyer with the group, said she saw a “nursing mother sleeping on cardboard with her baby” and that attorneys also spoke to a woman in the MPP program there who said she had recently miscarried in a US hospital while in Customs and Border Protection custody. The attorneys said some asylum seekers had tents, but many did not.

      Vinet-Martin and Claire Noone, another lawyer there as part of the L4GG project, said they found children with disabilities who had been placed in the MPP program, including two children with Down Syndrome, one of them eight months old.

      Human Rights Watch also found that Customs and Border Protection continues to return asylum seekers with disabilities or other chronic health conditions to Mexico, despite the Department of Homeland Security’s initial guidance that no one with “known physical/mental health issues” would be placed in the program. In Ciudad Juárez, Human Rights Watch documented six such cases, four of them children. In one case, a 14-year-old boy had been placed in the program along with his mother and little brother, who both have intellectual disabilities, although the boy said they have family in the US. He appeared to be confused and distraught by his situation.

      The Mexican government has taken some steps to protect migrants in Ciudad Juárez, including opening a large government-operated shelter. The shelter, which Human Rights Watch visited on August 22, has a capacity of 3,000 migrants and is well-stocked with food, blankets, sleeping pads, personal hygiene kits, and more. At the time of the visit, the shelter held 555 migrants, including 230 children, primarily asylum seekers in the MPP program.

      One Mexican government official said the government will soon open two more shelters – one in Tijuana with a capacity of 3,000 and another in Mexicali with a capacity of 1,500.

      Problems Affecting the ‘Assisted Voluntary Return’ Program

      In October 2018, the International Organization for Migration began operating a $1.65 million US State Department-funded “Assisted Voluntary Return” program to assist migrants who have decided or felt compelled to return home. The return program originally targeted Central Americans traveling in large groups through the interior of Mexico. However, in July, the program began setting up offices in Ciudad Juárez, Tijuana, and Mexicali focusing on asylum seekers forced to wait in those cities after being placed in the MPP program. Alex Rigol Ploettner, who heads the International Organization for Migration office in Ciudad Juárez, said that the organization also provides material support such as bunk beds and personal hygiene kits to shelters, which the organization asks to refer interested asylum seekers to the Assisted Voluntary Return program. Four shelter operators in Ciudad Juárez confirmed these activities.

      As of late August, Rigol Ploettner said approximately 500 asylum seekers in the MPP program had been referred to Assisted Voluntary Return. Of those 500, he said, about 95 percent were found to be eligible for the program.

      He said the organization warns asylum seekers that returning to their home country may cause them to receive deportation orders from the US in absentia, meaning they will most likely face a ban on entering the US of up to 10 years.

      The organization does not inform US immigration courts that they have returned asylum seekers, nor are asylum seekers assisted in withdrawing their petition for asylum, which would avoid future penalties in the US.

      “For now, as the IOM, we don’t have a direct mechanism for withdrawal,” Rigol Ploettner said. Human Rights Watch is deeply concerned about the failure to notify the asylum courts when people who are on US immigration court dockets return home and the negative legal consequences for asylum seekers. These concerns are heightened by the environment in which the Assisted Voluntary Return Program is operating. Asylum seekers in the MPP are in such a vulnerable situation that it cannot be assumed that decisions to return home are based on informed consent.

      https://www.hrw.org/news/2019/09/25/us-move-puts-more-asylum-seekers-risk

      via @pascaline

    • Sweeping Language in Asylum Agreement Foists U.S. Responsibilities onto El Salvador

      Amid a tightening embrace of Trump administration policies, last week El Salvador agreed to begin taking asylum-seekers sent back from the United States. The agreement was announced on Friday but details were not made public at the time. The text of the agreement — which The Intercept requested and obtained from the Department of Homeland Security — purports to uphold international and domestic obligations “to provide protection for eligible refugees,” but immigration experts see the move as the very abandonment of the principle of asylum. Aaron Reichlin-Melnick, policy analyst at American Immigration Council, called the agreement a “deeply cynical” move.

      The agreement, which closely resembles one that the U.S. signed with Guatemala in July, implies that any asylum-seeker who is not from El Salvador could be sent back to that country and forced to seek asylum there. Although officials have said that the agreements would apply to people who passed through El Salvador or Guatemala en route, the text of the agreements does not explicitly make that clear.

      “This agreement is so potentially sweeping that it could be used to send an asylum-seeker who never transited El Salvador to El Salvador,” said Eleanor Acer, senior director of refugee protection at the nonprofit organization Human Rights First.

      DHS did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

      The Guatemalan deal has yet to take effect, as Guatemala’s Congress claims to need to ratify it first. DHS officials are currently seeking a similar arrangement with Honduras and have been pressuring Mexico — under threats of tariffs — to crack down on U.S.-bound migration.

      The agreement with El Salvador comes after the Supreme Court recently upheld the Trump administration’s most recent asylum ban, which requires anyone who has transited through another country before reaching the border to seek asylum there first, and be denied in that country, in order to be eligible for asylum in the U.S. Meanwhile, since January, more than 42,000 asylum-seekers who filed their claims in the U.S. before the ban took effect have been pushed back into Mexico and forced to wait there — where they have been subjected to kidnapping, rape, and extortion, among other hazards — as the courts slowly weigh their eligibility.

      Reichlin-Melnick called the U.S.-El Salvador deal “yet another sustained attack at our system of asylum protections.” It begins by invoking the international Refugee Convention and the principle of non-refoulement, which is the crux of asylum law — the guarantee not to return asylum-seekers to a country where they would be subjected to persecution or death. Karen Musalo, law professor at U.C. Hastings Center for Gender and Refugee Studies, called that invocation “Orwellian.”

      “The idea that El Salvador is a safe country for asylum-seekers when it is one of the major countries sending asylum-seekers to the U.S., a country with one of the highest homicide and femicide rates in the world, a place in which gangs have control over large swathes of the country, and the violence is causing people to flee in record numbers … is another absurdity that is beyond the pale,” Musalo said.

      “El Salvador is not a country that is known for having any kind of protection for its own citizens’ human rights,” Musalo added. “If they can’t protect their own citizens, it’s absolutely absurd to think that they can protect people that are not their citizens.”

      “They’ve looked at all of the facts,” Reichlin-Melnick said. “And they’ve decided to create their own reality.”

      Last week, the Salvadoran newspaper El Faro reported that the country’s agency that reviews asylum claims only has a single officer. Meanwhile, though homicide rates have gone down in recent months — since outsider president Nayib Bukele took office in June — September has already seen an increase in homicides. Bukele’s calculus in accepting the agreement is still opaque to Salvadoran observers (Guatemala’s version was deeply unpopular in that country), but he has courted U.S. investment and support. The legal status of nearly 200,000 Salvadorans with temporary protected status in the U.S. is also under threat from the administration. This month also saw the symbolic launch of El Salvador’s Border Patrol — with U.S. funding and support. This week, Bukele, who has both sidled up to Trump and employed Trumpian tactics, will meet with the U.S. president in New York to discuss immigration.

      Reichlin-Melnick noted that the Guatemalan and Salvadoran agreements, as written, could bar people not only from seeking asylum, but also from two other protections meant to fulfill the non-refoulement principle: withholding of removal (a stay on deportation) and the Convention Against Torture, which prevents people from being returned to situations where they may face torture. That would mean that these Central American cooperation agreements go further than the recent asylum ban, which still allows people to apply for those other protections.

      Another major difference between the asylum ban and these agreements is that with the asylum ban, people would be deported to their home countries. If these agreements go into effect, the U.S. will start sending people to Guatemala or El Salvador, regardless of where they may be from. In the 1980s, the ACLU documented over 100 cases of Salvadorans who were harmed or killed after they were deported from the U.S. After this agreement goes into effect, it will no longer be just Salvadorans who the U.S. will be sending into danger.

      https://theintercept.com/2019/09/23/el-salvador-asylum-agreement

    • La forteresse Trump ou le pari du mur

      Plus que sur le mur promis pendant sa campagne, Donald Trump semble fonder sa #politique_migratoire sur une #pression_commerciale sur ses voisins du sud, remettant en cause les #échanges économiques mais aussi culturels avec le Mexique. Ce mur ne serait-il donc que symbolique ?
      Alors que l’administration américaine le menaçait de #taxes_douanières et de #guerre_commerciale, le Mexique d’Andres Lopez Obrador a finalement concédé de freiner les flux migratoires.

      Après avoir accepté un #accord imposé par Washington, Mexico a considérablement réduit les flux migratoires et accru les #expulsions. En effet, plus de 100 000 ressortissants centre-américains ont été expulsés du Mexique vers le #Guatemala dans les huit premiers mois de l’année, soit une hausse de 63% par rapport à l’année précédente selon les chiffres du Guatemala.

      Par ailleurs, cet été le Guatemala a conclu un accord de droit d’asile avec Washington, faisant de son territoire un « #pays_sûr » auprès duquel les demandeurs d’asiles ont l’obligation d’effectuer les premières démarches. Le Salvador et le #Honduras ont suivi la voie depuis.

      Et c’est ainsi que, alors qu’il rencontrait les plus grandes difficultés à obtenir les financements pour le mur à la frontière mexicaine, Donald Trump mise désormais sur ses voisins pour externaliser sa politique migratoire.

      Alors le locataire de la Maison Blanche a-t-il oublié ses ambitions de poursuivre la construction de cette frontière de fer et de béton ? Ce mur n’était-il qu’un symbole destiné à montrer à son électorat son volontarisme en matière de lutte contre l’immigration ? Le retour de la campagne est-il susceptible d’accélérer les efforts dans le domaine ?

      D’autre part, qu’en est-il de la situation des migrants sur le terrain ? Comment s’adaptent-ils à cette nouvelle donne ? Quelles conséquences sur les parcours migratoires des hommes, des femmes et des enfants qui cherchent à gagner les Etats-Unis ?

      On se souvient de cette terrible photo des cadavres encore enlacés d’un père et de sa petite fille de 2 ans, Oscar et Valeria Alberto, originaires du Salvador, morts noyés dans les eaux tumultueuses du Rio Bravo en juin dernier alors qu’ils cherchaient à passer aux Etats-Unis.

      Ce destin tragique annonce-t-il d’autres drames pour nombre de candidats à l’exil qui, quelques soient les politiques migratoires des Etats, iront au bout de leur vie avec l’espoir de l’embellir un peu ?

      https://www.franceculture.fr/emissions/cultures-monde/les-frontieres-de-la-colere-14-la-forteresse-trump-ou-le-pari-du-mur

      #Mexique #symbole #barrières_frontalières #USA #Etats-Unis #renvois #push-back #refoulements

    • Mexico sends asylum seekers south — with no easy way to return for U.S. court dates

      The exhausted passengers emerge from a sleek convoy of silver and red-streaked buses, looking confused and disoriented as they are deposited ignominiously in this tropical backwater in southernmost Mexico.

      There is no greeter here to provide guidance on their pending immigration cases in the United States or on where to seek shelter in a teeming international frontier town packed with marooned, U.S.-bound migrants from across the globe.

      The bus riders had made a long and perilous overland trek north to the Rio Grande only to be dispatched back south to Mexico’s border with Central America — close to where many of them had begun their perilous journeys weeks and months earlier. At this point, some said, both their resources and sense of hope had been drained.

      “We don’t know what we’re going to do next,” said Maria de Los Angeles Flores Reyes, 39, a Honduran accompanied by her daughter, Cataren, 9, who appeared petrified after disembarking from one of the long-distance buses. “There’s no information, nothing.”

      The two are among more than 50,000 migrants, mostly Central Americans, whom U.S. immigration authorities have sent back to Mexico this year to await court hearings in the United States under the Trump administration’s Remain in Mexico program.

      Immigration advocates have assailed the program as punitive, while the White House says it has worked effectively — discouraging many migrants from following up on asylum cases and helping to curb what President Trump has decried as a “catch and release” system in which apprehended migrants have been freed in U.S. territory pending court proceeding that can drag on for months or years.

      The ever-expanding ranks pose a growing dilemma for Mexican authorities, who, under intense pressure from the White House, had agreed to accept the returnees and provide them with humanitarian assistance.

      As the numbers rise, Mexico, in many cases, has opted for a controversial solution: Ship as many asylum seekers as possible more than 1,000 miles back here in the apparent hope that they will opt to return to Central America — even if that implies endangering or foregoing prospective political asylum claims in U.S. immigration courts.

      Mexican officials, sensitive to criticism that they are facilitating Trump’s hard-line deportation agenda, have been tight-lipped about the shadowy busing program, under which thousands of asylum-seekers have been returned here since August. (Mexican authorities declined to provide statistics on just how many migrants have been sent back under the initiative.)

      In a statement, Mexico’s immigration agency called the 40-hour bus rides a “free, voluntary and secure” alternative for migrants who don’t want to spend months waiting in the country’s notoriously dangerous northern border towns.

      Advocates counter that the program amounts to a barely disguised scheme for encouraging ill-informed migrants to abandon their ongoing petitions in U.S. immigration court and return to Central America. Doing so leaves them to face the same conditions that they say forced them to flee toward the United States, and, at the same time, would undermine the claims that they face persecution at home.

      “Busing someone back to your southern border doesn’t exactly send them a message that you want them to stay in your country,” said Maureen Meyer, who heads the Mexico program for the Washington Office on Latin America, a research and advocacy group. “And it isn’t always clear that the people on the buses understand what this could mean for their cases in the United States.”

      Passengers interviewed on both ends of the bus pipeline — along the northern Mexican border and here on the southern frontier with Guatemala — say that no Mexican official briefed them on the potential legal jeopardy of returning home.

      “No one told us anything,” Flores Reyes asked after she got off the bus here, bewildered about how to proceed. “Is there a safe place to stay here until our appointment in December?”

      The date is specified on a notice to appear that U.S. Border Patrol agents handed her before she and her daughter were sent back to Mexico last month after having been detained as illegal border-crossers in south Texas. They are due Dec. 16 in a U.S. immigration court in Harlingen, Texas, for a deportation hearing, according to the notice, stamped with the capital red letters MPP — for Migrant Protection Protocols, the official designation of Remain in Mexico.

      The free bus rides to the Guatemalan border are strictly a one-way affair: Mexico does not offer return rides back to the northern border for migrants due in a U.S. immigration court, typically several months later.

      Beti Suyapa Ortega, 36, and son Robinson Javier Melara, 17, in a Mexican immigration agency waiting room in Nuevo Laredo, Mexico.

      “At this point, I’m so frightened I just want to go home,” said Beti Suyapa Ortega, 36, from Honduras, who crossed the border into Texas intending to seek political asylum and surrendered to the Border Patrol.

      She, along with her son, 17, were among two dozen or so Remain in Mexico returnees waiting recently for a southbound bus in a spartan office space at the Mexican immigration agency compound in Nuevo Laredo, across the Rio Grande from Laredo, Texas.

      Ortega and others said they were terrified of venturing onto the treacherous streets of Nuevo Laredo — where criminal gangs control not only drug trafficking but also the lucrative enterprise of abducting and extorting from migrants.

      “We can’t get out of here soon enough. It has been a nightmare,” said Ortega, who explained that she and her son had been kidnapped and held for two weeks and only released when a brother in Atlanta paid $8,000 in ransom. “I can never come back to this place.”

      The Ortegas, along with a dozen or so other Remain in Mexico returnees, left later that evening on a bus to southern Mexico. She said she would skip her date in U.S. immigration court, in Laredo — an appointment that would require her to pass through Nuevo Laredo and expose herself anew to its highly organized kidnapping and extortion gangs.

      The Mexican government bus service operates solely from the northern border towns of Nuevo Laredo and Matamoros, officials say. Both are situated in hyper-dangerous Tamaulipas state, a cartel hub on the Gulf of Mexico that regularly ranks high nationwide in homicides, “disappearances” and the discovery of clandestine graves.

      The long-haul Mexican busing initiative began in July, after U.S. immigration authorities began shipping migrants with court cases to Tamaulipas. Earlier, Remain in Mexico had been limited to sending migrants with U.S. court dates back to the northern border towns of Tijuana, Mexicali and Ciudad Juarez.

      At first, the buses left migrants departing from Tamaulipas state in the city of Monterrey, a relatively safe industrial center four hours south of the U.S. border. But officials there, including the state governor, complained about the sudden influx of hundreds of mostly destitute Central Americans. That’s when Mexican authorities appear to have begun busing all the way back to Ciudad Hidalgo, along Mexico’s border with Guatemala.

      A separate, United Nations-linked program has also returned thousands of migrants south from two large cities on the U.S. border, Tijuana and Ciudad Juarez.

      The packed buses arrive here two or three times a week, with no apparent set schedule.

      On a recent morning, half a dozen, each ferrying more than 40 migrants, came to a stop a block from the Rodolfo Robles international bridge that spans the Suchiate River, the dividing line between Mexico and Guatemala. Part of the fleet of the Omnibus Cristobal Colon long-distance transport company, the buses displayed windshield signs explaining they were “in the service” of Mexico’s national immigration agency.

      The migrants on board had begun the return journey south in Matamoros, across from Brownsville, Texas, after having been sent back there by U.S. immigration authorities.

      Many clutched folders with notices to appear in U.S. immigration court in Texas in December.

      But some, including Flores Reyes, said they were terrified of returning to Matamoros, where they had been subjected to robbery or kidnapping. Nor did they want to return across the Rio Grande to Texas, if it required travel back through Matamoros.

      Flores Reyes said kidnappers held her and her daughter for a week in Matamoros before they managed to escape with the aid of a fellow Honduran.

      The pair later crossed into Texas, she said, and they surrendered to the U.S. Border Patrol. On Sept. 11, they were sent back to Matamoros with a notice to appear Dec. 16 in immigration court in Harlingen.

      “When they told us they were sending us back to Matamoros I became very upset,” Flores Reyes said. “I can’t sleep. I’m still so scared because of what happened to us there.”

      Fearing a second kidnapping, she said, she quickly agreed to take the transport back to southern Mexico.

      Christian Gonzalez, 23, a native of El Salvador who was also among those recently returned here, said he had been mugged in Matamoros and robbed of his cash, his ID and his documents, among them the government notice to appear in U.S. immigration court in Texas in December.

      “Without the paperwork, what can I do?” said an exasperated Gonzalez, a laborer back in Usulutan province in southeastern El Salvador. “I don’t have any money to stay here.”

      He planned to abandon his U.S. immigration case and return to El Salvador, where he said he faced threats from gangs and an uncertain future.

      Standing nearby was Nuvia Carolina Meza Romero, 37, accompanied by her daughter, Jessi, 8, who clutched a stuffed sheep. Both had also returned on the buses from Matamoros. Meza Romero, too, was in a quandary about what do, but seemed resigned to return to Honduras.

      “I can’t stay here. I don’t know anyone and I don’t have any money,” said Meza Romero, who explained that she spent a week in U.S. custody in Texas after crossing the Rio Grande and being apprehended on Sept. 2.

      Her U.S. notice to appear advised her to show up on Dec. 3 in U.S. immigration court in Brownsville.

      “I don’t know how I would even get back there at this point,” said Meza Romero, who was near tears as she stood with her daughter near the border bridge.

      Approaching the migrants were aggressive bicycle taxi drivers who, for a fee of the equivalent of about $2, offered to smuggle them back across the river to Guatemala on rafts made of planks and inner tubes, thus avoiding Mexican and Guatemalan border inspections.

      Opting to cross the river were many bus returnees from Matamoros, including Meza Romero, her daughter and Gonzalez, the Salvadoran.

      But Flores Reyes was hesitant to return to Central America and forfeit her long-sought dream of resettling in the United States, even if she had to make her way back to Matamoros on her own.

      “Right now, we just need to find some shelter,” Flores Reyes said as she ambled off in search of some kind of lodging, her daughter holding her mother’s arm. “We have an appointment on Dec. 16 on the other side. I plan to make it. I’m not ready to give up yet.”

      https://www.latimes.com/world-nation/story/2019-10-15/buses-to-nowhere-mexico-transports-migrants-with-u-s-court-dates-to-its-far

      –---------

      Commentaire de @pascaline via la mailing-list Migreurop :

      Outre le dispositif d’expulsion par charter de l’OIM (https://seenthis.net/messages/730601) mis en place à la frontière nord du Mexique pour les MPPs, le transfert et l’abandon des demandeurs d’asile MPPS à la frontière avec le Guatemala, par les autorités mexicaines est présentée comme une façon de leur permettre d’échapper à la dangerosité des villes frontalières du Nord tout en espérant qu’ils choississent de retourner par eux-mêmes « chez eux »...

  • Land Grabs Are Partly To Blame For Skyrocketing Violence In Central America | HuffPost
    https://www.huffpost.com/entry/landgrabs-central-america_b_586bf1a6e4b0eb58648abe1f

    onduras is not the only country where this is happening. Large corporations have been taking control of rural land in many parts of the world over the last decade. That access is sometimes lawful but other times shadowy, and it is sometimes accompanied by brutal armed conflict against unarmed peasants. Globally, land grabs accelerated in the mid-2000s, putting a large number of smallholders in crisis. Large foreign corporations joined in, and there have been killings and terrorizing of smallholders who fight back.

    #landgrabing #honduras #accumulation_primitive

  • Meyer Habib sur Twitter : « Parabéns #JairBolsonaro qui ouvre de nouvelles perspectives au #Bresil, affranchi de la corruption et du socialisme. Accueil chaleureux et fraternel à Israël et au PM netanyahu. Le ?? va transférer son ambassade à #Jerusalem, de même que #Honduras ??. À quand la France ? https://t.co/nvhBIFYgrj » / Twitter
    https://twitter.com/Meyer_Habib/status/1080409327943454720

    #extrême_droite #silence #MSM

  • Hondurans repatriated to hopelessness

    Over 67,000 displaced Hondurans who tried to escape violence and poverty have been sent back from US and Mexico so far this year. Many become displaced again in Honduras as they cannot return to their homes.


    https://www.nrc.no/hondurans-repatriated-to-hopelessness

    #Honduras #migrerrance #renvois #push-back #refoulement #frontières #asile #migrations #réfugiés #frontières #USA #Etats-Unis #limbe

  • Accelerated remittances growth to low- and middle-income countries in 2018

    Remittances to low- and middle-income countries grew rapidly and are projected to reach a new record in 2018, says the latest edition of the World Bank’s Migration and Development Brief, released today.

    The Bank estimates that officially recorded remittances to developing countries will increase by 10.8 percent to reach $528 billion in 2018. This new record level follows robust growth of 7.8 percent in 2017. Global remittances, which include flows to high-income countries, are projected to grow by 10.3 percent to $689 billion.

    Remittance flows rose in all regions, most notably in Europe and Central Asia (20 percent) and South Asia (13.5 percent), followed by Sub-Saharan Africa (9.8 percent), Latin America and the Caribbean (9.3 percent), the Middle East and North Africa (9.1 percent), and East Asia and the Pacific (6.6 percent). Growth was driven by a stronger economy and employment situation in the United States and a rebound in outward flows from Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries and the Russian Federation.

    Among major remittance recipients, India retains its top spot, with remittances expected to total $80 billion this year, followed by China ($67 billion), Mexico and the Philippines ($34 billion each), and Egypt ($26 billion).

    As global growth is projected to moderate, future remittances to low- and middle-income countries are expected to grow moderately by 4 percent to reach $549 billion in 2019. Global remittances are expected to grow 3.7 percent to $715 billion in 2019.

    The Brief notes that the global average cost of sending $200 remains high at 6.9 percent in the third quarter of 2018. Reducing remittance costs to 3 percent by 2030 is a global target under #Sustainable_Development_Goals (SDG) 10.7. Increasing the volume of remittances is also a global goal under the proposals for raising financing for the SDGs.

    https://www.worldbank.org/en/news/press-release/2018/12/08/accelerated-remittances-growth-to-low-and-middle-income-countries-in-2018

    #remittances #migrations #statistiques #chiffres #2018 #coût #SDGs

    • #Rapport : Migration and Remittances

      This Migration and Development Brief reports global trends in migration and remittance flows. It highlights developments connected to migration-related Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) indicators for which the World Bank is a custodian: increasing the volume of remittances as a percentage of gross domestic product (GDP) (SDG indicator 17.3.2), reducing remittance costs (SDG indicator 10.c.1), and reducing recruitment costs for migrant workers (SDG indicator 10.7.1). This Brief also presents recent developments on the Global Compact on Migration (GCM) and proposes an implementation and review mechanism.


      https://www.knomad.org/publication/migration-and-development-brief-30

      Pour télécharger le rapport :
      https://www.knomad.org/sites/default/files/2018-12/Migration%20and%20Development%20Brief%2030%20advance%20copy.pdf

    • International Remittances Headline ACP-EU-IOM Discussions in #Ghana

      In Sub-Saharan Africa, the flow of remittances is on the rise, but the cost to transfer these funds is far higher than the global average, making the region the most expensive place in the world to send money.

      The International Organization for Migration (IOM) and partners focused on improving the use of migrant remittances, particularly in Sub-Saharan Africa at a three-day regional thematic meeting starting today (19/02) in Accra, Ghana.

      International remittances have been taking on increasing weight in the global policy agenda in recent years according to Jeffrey Labovitz, IOM Regional Director for East and Horn of Africa, who is speaking at the event.

      “This in part reflects the growing understanding that improving and harnessing the flow of remittances can have a substantial impact on development,” he said.

      Remittances to Sub-Saharan Africa grew from USD 34 billion in 2016 to USD 38 billion in 2017, an increase of over 11 per cent. Despite this increase – a trend which is expected to continue through 2019 – Sub-Saharan Africa remains the most expensive place in the world to send money with an average cost of 9.4 per cent of the transfer amount, a figure that was 29 per cent above the world average in 2017. This is far short of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) target 10.C.3 to reduce the transaction costs of migrant remittances to less than 3 per cent by 2030.

      “Almost 75 per cent of remittances are spent on consumption which greatly benefit the receiving households and communities,” said Claudia Natali, Regional Specialist on Labour Mobility and Development at the IOM Regional Office for West and Central Africa.

      “But more could be done to maximize the remaining 25 per cent. Fostering financial inclusion and promoting initiatives that help people manage the funds can go a long way to harness development impacts of remittances,” she added.

      The meeting, which runs through Thursday (21/02), is providing a platform for communication, exchange and learning for 80 participants involved in IOM’s “ACP-EU Migration Action", including migration experts and representatives from African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) governments, regional organizations, the European Union (EU), UN agencies and NGOs working in remittances and diaspora mobilization.

      Given that remittances are at the heart of the joint ACP Group of States and European Union Dialogue’s recommendations on migration, discussions also aim to generate thematic recommendations for the Sub-Saharan region and establish links between the outcomes of the ACP-EU Migration Action programme, and processes relevant to the ACP-EU Dialogue on Migration and Development at the regional and global levels.

      The meeting is organized by IOM’s country office for Ghana and the IOM Regional Office in Brussels in partnership with the African Institute for Remittances (AIR) and Making Finance Work for Africa Partnership (MFW4A).

      IOM’s ACP-EU Migration Action, launched in June 2014, provides tailored technical support on migration to ACP countries and regional organizations. To date it has received 74 technical assistance requests from 67 ACP governments and 7 regional organizations, a third of which directly concern remittances.

      The programme is financed by the 10th European Development Fund (EDF) and supported by the ACP Secretariat and the EU. For more information on the ACP-EU Migration Action, go to: www.acpeumigrationaction.iom.int.

      https://www.iom.int/news/international-remittances-headline-acp-eu-iom-discussions-ghana

    • The cost of cross-border payments needs to drop

      FOR MOST of human history, sending money across borders has cost the earth. Thankfully for globetrotters and e-shoppers in the rich world, that has changed in the past decade. A shift from cash and travellers’ cheques towards digital payments has cut the cost of moving funds around. And a new generation of fintech firms has broken the stranglehold that big banks used to have on money transfers (see article). As a result, fees have fallen. The cost of a transfer between consumers or small firms who are both in G7 countries can now cost 2% or less. This year some $10trn will pass across borders. As prices fall further, the sums will grow.


      https://amp.economist.com/leaders/2019/04/13/the-cost-of-cross-border-payments-needs-to-drop
      #paywall

  • The Plunder Continues « LRB blog
    https://www.lrb.co.uk/blog/2018/12/05/john-perry/the-plunder-continues

    In her new book, The Long Honduran Night, Dana Frank asks whether #Honduras should now be called a ‘failed state’. She argues that it shouldn’t, as it works perfectly for those who control it: landowners, drug traffickers, oligarchs and transnational corporations, the US-funded military and corrupt public officials. The Trump administration has seen Hernández as an ally in their project of restoring US influence in Latin America, promoting transnational capitalism and widening the reach of the US military.

    #Etats-Unis#élites#corruption

  • Why the Migrant Caravan Story Is a Climate Change Story

    Drought, crop failure, storms, and land disputes pit the rich against the poor, and Central America is ground zero for climate change.


    https://www.yesmagazine.org/peace-justice/why-the-migrant-caravan-story-is-a-climate-change-story-20181127
    #asile #migrations #réfugiés #réfugiés_environnementaux #Amériques #caravane #Mexique #Amérique_centrale #Amérique_latine #réfugiés_climatiques #climat #changement_climatique #Honduras

    Countries, like the U.S., that have emitted the most CO2 are fortifying their borders against people from countries who have emitted the least.

    #responsabilité

  • Palm Oil and Extreme Violence in Honduras : The Inexorable Rise and Dubious Reform of #Grupo_Dinant

    A case in point is Grupo Dinant, a Honduran palm oil company that declared last month that it has been awarded international environmental certifications for its achievements in environmental management and occupational health and safety. Dinant has also been making overtures toward joining the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO), including hosting the RSPO’s 4th Latin American conference in Honduras in 2013. But, Dinant, which produces about 60 percent of the palm oil in Honduras, is at the center of what has been called “the most serious situation in terms of violence against peasants in Central America in the last 15 years.”

    https://truthout.org/articles/palm-oil-and-extreme-violence-in-honduras-the-inexorable-rise-and-dubious-

    #huile_de_palme #violence #Honduras

  • Honduras : pourquoi une « caravane » de migrants fait route vers les Etats-Unis
    http://www.europe1.fr/international/honduras-pourquoi-une-caravane-de-migrants-fait-route-vers-les-etats-unis-37

    Le président de la République, Juan Orlando Hernandez, a été élu en 2013

    Exit le coup d’état préalable contre Zelaya et les conditions de l’election de 2013.

    Le difficile périple des enfants de la caravane des migrants
    https://www.romandie.com/news/964963.rom

    Leurs parents veulent leur offrir un avenir loin de la #pauvreté et de la #violence des gangs qui sévissent au #Honduras, mais pour les centaines d’enfants de la caravane de migrants, le périple jusqu’aux #Etats-Unis est particulièrement épuisant et risqué.

    Sur les cinq derniers jours seulement, depuis que des milliers de migrants ont passé la frontière entre le Guatemala et le Mexique, ces enfants ont été exposés aux dangers d’une bousculade et de la traversée d’un fleuve, et à une chaleur accablante.

  • La caravana migrante, desde dentro | Internacional | EL PAÍS
    https://elpais.com/internacional/2018/10/22/actualidad/1540171146_773800.html

    “Con todo y los sacrificios, para mí la caravana es una experiencia bonita, ¿sabes por qué”, pregunta sonriente Castillo, que fue deportada hace tres meses en Arriaga, 275 kilómetros al norte de la
    frontera entre México y Guatemala, y desde hace una semana intenta llegar otra vez a Estados Unidos. “Porque puedo ser solidaria con mi gente, eso es lo que más me gusta”, dice la migrante de San Pedro Sula, antes de resguardarse de la lluvia que arrecia Tapachula debajo de un pequeño trozo de lona. Mañana salen otra vez.

    Quelques témoignages de l’intérieur.

    #caravane #migrants

  • Words matter. Is it @AP style to call migrants an “army”—above a photo of mothers tending to their infants and toddlers, no less? This is not only incorrect, but it enables a racist narrative sold by this @POTUS and his supporters. Armies invade. These people are running away.


    https://twitter.com/JamilSmith/status/1054163071785037824
    #armée #terminologie #préjugés #invasion #afflux #mots #vocabulaire #migrations #réfugiés #médias #journalisme #presse

    • #Polly_Pallister-Wilkins sur la marche de migrants qui a lieu en Amérique centrale...

      Dear media reporting on the Central American migrant caravan, can you please be attentive to how you talk about it? 1/n
      People are walking, walking not pouring, flowing, or streaming. Walking. They are walking along roads, they will be tired, hungry, their feet will hurt, they will have blisters and sore joints. They are not a natural liquid phenomenon governed by the force of gravity. 2/n
      Their walking is conditioned by the infrastructures they move along like roads, the physical geographies they traverse like hills and rivers and the human controls they encounter like border controls and police checkpoints. 3/n
      All of these things are risky, they make the walk, the journey more difficult and dangerous, esepcially the police checkpoints and the border controls. These risks are the reason they are travelling as a caravan, as a large group attempting to minimise the risks of controls 4/n
      And the risks from gangs and criminals that migrants on their journeys routinely face. Their journey is a deeply embodied one, and one that is deeply conditioned both by the violence they are leaving and the violence of the journey itself. 5/n
      So media please try and reflect this in your storytelling. These people are not a river obeying gravity. They have made an active yet conditioned choice to move. When they encounter a block in their path this can be deadly. It can detain, deport, injure, rape, or kill. 6/n
      And these blockages are not boulders in a riverbed around which the river flows. These blockages, these #checkpoints, border controls or police patrols are human blockages, they are not natural. So please try and reflect the political structures of this journey. Please. End/
      Addendum: there is a long history of caravans as a form political resistance in Central America.

      https://twitter.com/PollyWilkins/status/1054267257944227840
      #marche #migrations #Honduras #Amérique_centrale #mots #vocabulaire #terminologie #média #journalisme #presse #caravane #métaphores_liquides #risque #gravité #mouvement #contrôles_frontaliers #blocages #barrières #résistance #Mexique

    • Migrants travel in groups for a simple reason: safety

      A caravan of Central American migrants traveling to through Mexico to the United States to seek asylum is about halfway through its journey.

      The caravan began on Oct. 13 in Honduras with 200 people. As it has moved through Honduras, Guatemala and now Mexico, its ranks have grown to over 7,000, according to an estimate by the International Organization of Migration.

      The migrants have been joined by representatives from humanitarian organizations like the Mexican Red Cross providing medical assistance and human rights groups that monitor the situation.

      Journalists are there, too, and their reporting has caught the attention of President Donald Trump.

      He has claimed that the caravan’s ranks probably hide Middle Eastern terrorists. Trump later acknowledged there is no evidence of this, but conservative media outlets have nevertheless spread the message.

      It is reasonable for Americans to have security concerns about immigration. But as a scholar of forced migration, I believe it’s also important to consider why migrants travel in groups: their own safety.
      Safety in numbers

      The Central Americans in the caravan, like hundreds of thousands of people who flee the region each year, are escaping extreme violence, lack of economic opportunity and growing environmental problems, including drought and floods, back home.

      Guatemala, Honduras and Mexico have some of the world’s highest murder rates. According to Doctors Without Borders, which provides medical care in crisis zones, 68 percent of the migrants and refugees it surveyed in Mexico had experienced violence. Nearly one-third of women were sexually abused.

      Whether crossing Central America, the Sahara desert or the mountains of Afghanistan, migrants are regularly extorted by criminals, militias and corrupt immigration officials who know migrants make easy targets: They carry cash but not weapons.

      Large groups increase migrants’ chance of safe passage, and they provide some sense of community and solidarity on the journey, as migrants themselves report.
      Publicizing the dangers they flee

      Large groups of migrants also attract media coverage. As journalists write about why people are on the move, they shed light on Central America’s many troubles.

      Yet headlines about huge migrant caravans may misrepresent trends at the U.S.-Mexico border, where migration is actually decreasing.

      While the number of Central American families and children seeking asylum in the U.S. has increased in the past two years, Mexican economic migrants are crossing the border at historically low levels.

      And while most migrant caravan members hope to seek asylum in the U.S., recent history shows many will stay in Mexico.

      In response to Trump’s immigration crackdown, Mexican president-elect Andrés Manuel López Obrador has promised to welcome Central American refugees — and try to keep them safe.


      https://theconversation.com/migrants-travel-in-groups-for-a-simple-reason-safety-105621

      #sécurité

    • Trump’s Caravan Hysteria Led to This

      The president and his supporters insisted that several thousand Honduran migrants were a looming menace—and the Pittsburgh gunman took that seriously.

      On Tuesday, October 16, President Donald Trump started tweeting.

      “The United States has strongly informed the President of Honduras that if the large Caravan of people heading to the U.S. is not stopped and brought back to Honduras, no more money or aid will be given to Honduras, effective immediately!”

      “We have today informed the countries of Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador that if they allow their citizens, or others, to journey through their borders and up to the United States, with the intention of entering our country illegally, all payments made to them will STOP (END)!”

      Vice President Mike Pence also tweeted:

      “Spoke to President Hernandez of Honduras about the migrant caravan heading to the U.S. Delivered strong message from @POTUS: no more aid if caravan is not stopped. Told him U.S. will not tolerate this blatant disregard for our border & sovereignty.”

      The apparent impetus for this outrage was a segment on Fox News that morning that detailed a migrant caravan thousands of miles away in Honduras. The caravan, which began sometime in mid-October, is made up of refugees fleeing violence in their home country. Over the next few weeks, Trump did his best to turn the caravan into a national emergency. Trump falsely told his supporters that there were “criminals and unknown Middle Easterners” in the caravan, a claim that had no basis in fact and that was meant to imply that terrorists were hiding in the caravan—one falsehood placed on another. Defense Secretary James Mattis ordered more troops to the border. A Fox News host took it upon herself to ask Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen whether there was “any scenario under which if people force their way across the border they could be shot at,” to which Nielsen responded, “We do not have any intention right now to shoot at people.”

      Pence told Fox News on Friday, “What the president of Honduras told me is that the caravan was organized by leftist organizations, political activists within Honduras, and he said it was being funded by outside groups, and even from Venezuela … So the American people, I think, see through this—they understand this is not a spontaneous caravan of vulnerable people.”

      The Department of Homeland Security’s Twitter account “confirmed” that within the caravan are people who are “gang members or have significant criminal histories,” without offering evidence of any such ties. Trump sought to blame the opposition party for the caravan’s existence. “Every time you see a Caravan, or people illegally coming, or attempting to come, into our Country illegally, think of and blame the Democrats for not giving us the votes to change our pathetic Immigration Laws!” Trump tweeted on October 22. “Remember the Midterms! So unfair to those who come in legally.”

      In the right-wing fever swamps, where the president’s every word is worshipped, commenters began amplifying Trump’s exhortations with new details. Representative Matt Gaetz of Florida wondered whether George Soros—the wealthy Jewish philanthropist whom Trump and several members of the U.S. Senate blamed for the protests against Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh, and who was recently targeted with a bomb—was behind the migrant caravan. NRATV, the propaganda organ of the National Rifle Association, linked two Republican obsessions, voter fraud and immigration. Chuck Holton told NRATV’s viewers that Soros was sending the caravan to the United States so the migrants could vote: “It’s telling that a bevy of left-wing groups are partnering with a Hungarian-born billionaire and the Venezuelan government to try to influence the 2018 midterms by sending Honduran migrants north in the thousands.” On CNN, the conservative commentator Matt Schlapp pointedly asked the anchor Alisyn Camerota, “Who’s paying for the caravan? Alisyn, who’s paying for the caravan?,” before later answering his own question: “Because of the liberal judges and other people that intercede, including George Soros, we have too much chaos at our southern border.” On Laura Ingraham’s Fox News show, one guest said, “These individuals are not immigrants—these are people that are invading our country,” as another guest asserted they were seeking “the destruction of American society and culture.”

      Peter Beinart: Trump shut programs to counter violent extremists

      In the meantime, much of the mainstream press abetted Trump’s effort to make the midterm election a referendum on the caravan. Popular news podcasts devoted entire episodes to the caravan. It remained on the front pages of major media websites. It was an overwhelming topic of conversation on cable news, where Trumpists freely spread disinformation about the threat the migrants posed, while news anchors displayed exasperation over their false claims, only to invite them back on the next day’s newscast to do it all over again.

      In reality, the caravan was thousands of miles and weeks away from the U.S. border, shrinking in size, and unlikely to reach the U.S. before the election. If the migrants reach the U.S., they have the right under U.S. law to apply for asylum at a port of entry. If their claims are not accepted, they will be turned away. There is no national emergency; there is no ominous threat. There is only a group of desperate people looking for a better life, who have a right to request asylum in the United States and have no right to stay if their claims are rejected. Trump is reportedly aware that his claims about the caravan are false. An administration official told the Daily Beast simply, “It doesn’t matter if it’s 100 percent accurate … this is the play.” The “play” was to demonize vulnerable people with falsehoods in order to frighten Trump’s base to the polls.

      Nevertheless, some took the claims of the president and his allies seriously. On Saturday morning, Shabbat morning, a gunman walked into the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh and killed 11 people. The massacre capped off a week of terrorism, in which one man mailed bombs to nearly a dozen Trump critics and another killed two black people in a grocery store after failing to force his way into a black church.

      Before committing the Tree of Life massacre, the shooter, who blamed Jews for the caravan of “invaders” and who raged about it on social media, made it clear that he was furious at HIAS, founded as the Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society, a Jewish group that helps resettle refugees in the United States. He shared posts on Gab, a social-media site popular with the alt-right, expressing alarm at the sight of “massive human caravans of young men from Honduras and El Salvador invading America thru our unsecured southern border.” And then he wrote, “HIAS likes to bring invaders in that kill our people. I can’t sit by and watch my people get slaughtered. Screw your optics, I’m going in.”

      The people killed on Saturday were killed for trying to make the world a better place, as their faith exhorts them to do. The history of the Jewish people is one of displacement, statelessness, and persecution. What groups like HIAS do in helping refugees, they do with the knowledge that comes from a history of being the targets of demagogues who persecute minorities in pursuit of power.

      Ordinarily, a politician cannot be held responsible for the actions of a deranged follower. But ordinarily, politicians don’t praise supporters who have mercilessly beaten a Latino man as “very passionate.” Ordinarily, they don’t offer to pay supporters’ legal bills if they assault protesters on the other side. They don’t praise acts of violence against the media. They don’t defend neo-Nazi rioters as “fine people.” They don’t justify sending bombs to their critics by blaming the media for airing criticism. Ordinarily, there is no historic surge in anti-Semitism, much of it targeted at Jewish critics, coinciding with a politician’s rise. And ordinarily, presidents do not blatantly exploit their authority in an effort to terrify white Americans into voting for their party. For the past few decades, most American politicians, Republican and Democrat alike, have been careful not to urge their supporters to take matters into their own hands. Trump did everything he could to fan the flames, and nothing to restrain those who might take him at his word.

      Many of Trump’s defenders argue that his rhetoric is mere shtick—that his attacks, however cruel, aren’t taken 100 percent seriously by his supporters. But to make this argument is to concede that following Trump’s statements to their logical conclusion could lead to violence against his targets, and it is only because most do not take it that way that the political violence committed on Trump’s behalf is as limited as it currently is.

      The Tree of Life shooter criticized Trump for not being racist or anti-Semitic enough. But with respect to the caravan, the shooter merely followed the logic of the president and his allies: He was willing to do whatever was necessary to prevent an “invasion” of Latinos planned by perfidious Jews, a treasonous attempt to seek “the destruction of American society and culture.”

      The apparent spark for the worst anti-Semitic massacre in American history was a racist hoax inflamed by a U.S. president seeking to help his party win a midterm election. There is no political gesture, no public statement, and no alteration in rhetoric or behavior that will change this fact. The shooter might have found a different reason to act on a different day. But he chose to act on Saturday, and he apparently chose to act in response to a political fiction that the president himself chose to spread and that his followers chose to amplify.

      As for those who aided the president in his propaganda campaign, who enabled him to prey on racist fears to fabricate a national emergency, who said to themselves, “This is the play”? Every single one of them bears some responsibility for what followed. Their condemnations of anti-Semitism are meaningless. Their thoughts and prayers are worthless. Their condolences are irrelevant. They can never undo what they have done, and what they have done will never be forgotten.

      https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2018/10/caravan-lie-sparked-massacre-american-jews/574213

    • Latin American asylum seekers hit US policy “wall”

      Trump’s new restrictions mean long waits simply to register claims.

      The movement of thousands of Central American asylum seekers and migrants north from Honduras towards the southern border of the United States has precipitated threats from US President Donald Trump – ahead of next week’s midterm elections – to block the group’s entry by deploying troops to the US-Mexican border.

      Under international law the United States is obligated to allow asylum seekers to enter and file claims. However, immigration officials at the country’s southern border have for months been shifting toward legally dubious practices that restrict people’s ability to file asylum claims.

      “Make no mistake, the administration is building a wall – one made of restrictionist policy rather than brick and mortar,” said Jason Boyd, policy counsel at the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA).

      As a result, hundreds, possibly thousands, of asylum seekers have been left waiting for extended periods of time on the Mexican side of the border in need of shelter and basic services. Firm numbers for those affected are difficult to come by because no one is counting.

      Some of those turned away explore potentially dangerous alternatives. Aid and advocacy groups as well as the Department of Homeland Security say the wait has likely pushed some to attempt to enter the United States illegally, either with smugglers or on their own via perilous desert routes.

      While some of those in the so-called “migrant caravan” are searching for economic opportunity, others are fleeing gang violence, gender-based violence, political repression or unrest – all increasingly common factors in Central America and Mexico that push people to leave their homes.
      Menacing phone calls

      When people from the migrant caravan reach the southern border of the United States, they may find themselves in a similar position to Dolores Alzuri, 47, from Michoacan, a state in central Mexico.

      In late September, she was camped out with her husband, daughter, granddaughter, and aunt on the Mexican side of the DeConcini port of entry separating the twin cities of Nogales – one in the Mexican state of Sonora, the other in the US state of Arizona.

      Alzuri and her family were waiting for their turn to claim asylum in the United States, with only a police report in hand as proof of the threats they faced back home. Camping beside them on the pedestrian walkway just outside the grated metal door leading to the United States, nine other families waited to do the same.

      Over the preceding month Alzuri had received several menacing phone calls from strangers demanding money. In Michoacan, and many other parts of Mexico where criminal gangs have a strong presence, almost anybody can receive calls like these. You don’t know who’s on the other end of the line, Alzuri explained, but you do know the consequences of not following their orders.

      “If you do not give [money] to them, they kidnap you or they kidnap your family,” Alzuri said. “They destroy you. They kill you. That is why it is so scary to be in this country.”

      Other people she knew had received similar calls. She also knew that those who didn’t pay ended up dead – pictures of their bodies posted on Facebook as a macabre warning of what happens to those who resist.

      Fearing a similar fate, Alzuri packed her bags and her family and travelled north to ask for asylum in the United States. A friend had been granted asylum about nine months ago, and she had seen on television that other people were going, too. It seemed like the only way out.

      “I had a problem,” she said, referring to the phone calls. “They asked us for money, and since we did not give them money, they threatened us.”

      Before leaving her home, Alzuri said she filed a police report. But the authorities didn’t care enough to act on it, she said. “They are not going to risk their life for mine.”
      No way out

      Despite the danger at home, Alzuri and others in similar situations face an increasingly difficult time applying for asylum in the United States. At the Nogales crossing, asylum seekers must now wait up to a month simply to be allowed to set foot inside a border office where they can register their claims, aid workers there say.

      Those waiting are stuck in territory on the Mexican side that is controlled by gangs similar to the ones many are fleeing, though local aid groups have scrambled to find space in shelters, especially for women and children, so people will be safer while they wait.

      The situation hasn’t always been like this.

      In the past, asylum seekers were almost always admitted to register their claims the same day they arrived at the border. Since May, however, there has been a marked slowdown in registration.

      US Custom and Border Protection (CBP), the federal law enforcement agency responsible for screening people as they enter the country, says delays are due to a lack of capacity and space. But asylum advocates say similar numbers have arrived in previous years without causing a delay and the real reason for the slowdown is that CBP has shifted resources away from processing asylum seekers – not just in Nogales but across the southern US border – resulting in people being forced to wait for long periods or turned away altogether.

      This is happening despite the insistence of high-ranking Trump administration officials that asylum seekers present themselves at ports of entry or face criminal prosecution for crossing the border irregularly. Such contradictory policies, asylum advocates argue, are part of a broad-based effort by the Trump administration to dramatically reduce the number of people able to seek protection in the United States.

      “Our legal understanding is that they have the legal obligation to process asylum seekers as they arrive,” said Joanna Williams, director of education and advocacy at the Kino Border Initiative (KBI), a Nogales-based NGO. “There’s no room in the law for what they are doing right now.”
      A system in crisis

      In the past decade, migration across the southern border of the United States has undergone a dramatic change. Every year since the late 1970s US Border Patrol agents apprehended close to a million or more undocumented migrants entering the country. In 2007, that number began to fall, and last year there were just over 310,000 apprehensions – the lowest number since 1971.

      At the same time, the proportion of people entering the United States from the southern border to claim asylum has increased. Ten years ago, one out of every 100 people crossing the border was seeking humanitarian protection, according to a recent report published by the Migration Policy Institute (MPI), a non-partisan think tank in Washington DC. Today that number is about one in three.

      According to Boyd of AILA, the increase is being driven by ongoing humanitarian emergencies in El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala, an area of Central America known as the Northern Triangle. These countries have some of the highest homicide rates in the world and are wracked by gang violence, gender-based violence, extortion, and extra-judicial killings. “Many of the individuals and families arriving at the US southern border are literally fleeing for their lives,” said Boyd.

      But the system that is supposed to provide them protection is in crisis. Beginning in 2010 the number of asylum requests lodged in the United States started to balloon, mirroring an upward trend in global displacement. Last year, 79,000 people approached the US border saying they had a credible fear of returning to their home country, compared to 9,000 at the beginning of the decade.

      The increase in credible-fear claims, as well as asylum requests made by people already in the United States, has strained the system to a “crisis point”, according to the MPI report. This has led to a backlog of around 320,000 cases in US immigration courts and people having to wait many months, if not years, to receive a hearing and a decision.
      Crackdown

      Senior officials in the Trump administration, including the president, have consistently lumped asylum seekers and economic migrants together, positing that the United States is being “invaded” by a “massive influx of illegal aliens” across the southern border, and that the asylum system is subject to “systematic abuse” by people looking to gain easy entry to the country.

      People working on the ground with asylum seekers refute this. Eduardo Garcia is a communication coordinator at SOA Watch, an organisation that monitors the humanitarian impact of US policy in Latin America. He has spent time in Nogales speaking with people waiting to claim asylum.

      “The stories of many of the people we have talked to… are stories of people fleeing gang violence, are stories of people fleeing because one of their sons was killed, because one of their sons was threatened, because one of their family members [was] raped,” he said. “They have said they cannot go back to their countries. If they are sent back they are going to be killed.”

      Still, the Trump administration’s zero-tolerance policy on immigration – responsible for the recent child-separation crisis – has also included measures that have restricted access to asylum in the United States.

      In May, Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced that the Justice Department would begin criminally prosecuting everyone who irregularly crossed the US southern border, including asylum seekers. In June, that policy was followed by a decision that the United States would no longer consider gang and sexual violence – precisely the reasons so many people flee the Northern Triangle – as legitimate grounds for asylum. Around the same time, CBP appears to have deprioritised the processing of asylum seekers at ports of entry in favour of other responsibilities, leading to the long waits and people being turned away, according to humanitarian workers and a recent report by the DHS’s Office of Inspector General.

      And even as these restrictive policies were being put in place, Trump administration officials have been encouraging asylum seekers to try. “If you’re seeking asylum, go to a port of entry,” Secretary of Homeland Security Kirstjen Nielsen said in an 18 June press conference. “You do not need to break the law of the United States to seek asylum.”

      Nogales, Mexico

      “I came here with the hope that if I asked for asylum I could be in the United States,” said Modesto, a 54-year-old from Chimaltenango, Guatemala. In mid-September he was sitting in a mess hall run a couple hundred meters from the US border run by KBI, which provides humanitarian assistance to migrants and asylum seekers.

      Modesto had already been in Nogales, Sonora for several months. Like Dolores Alzuri, he fled his home because criminal gangs had tried to extort money from him. “I worked a lot and was making a living in my country,” Modesto explained. “The problem in particular with the gangs is that they don’t let you work… If you have money they extort you. If you don’t have money they want to recruit you.” And people who don’t cooperate: “They’re dead,” he added.

      The situation Modesto found when he arrived in Nogales, Sonora was far from what he expected. For starters, there was the long wait at the border. But he also discovered that – as an adult travelling with his 18-year-old son – even once he entered the United States he would likely end up in a detention centre while his case slowly made its way through the overburdened immigration courts – a practice that has also increased under the Trump administration. “I don’t want to cross… and spend a year in prison when my family needs my help,” he said.

      Modesto is in some ways an exception, according to Williams of KBI. Many of the people arriving in Nogales, Sonora are families with children. Once in the United States they will likely be released from immigration detention with ankle monitoring bracelets to track their movements. These people often choose to wait and to claim asylum at the port of entry when there is space.

      After more than 100 people piled up to wait at the border in May, local humanitarian groups set up a system to organise and keep track of whose turn it was to submit an asylum claim to US immigration officials. They also scrambled to find spaces in shelters so people were not sleeping on the walkway over the weeks they needed to wait.

      Now, only people who are likely to enter soon are camped on the walkway. When IRIN visited, about 40 asylum seekers – mostly women and children – sat on one side of the walkway as a steady stream of people heading to the United States filtered by on the other. Some of the asylum seekers were new arrivals waiting to be taken to a shelter, while others had been sleeping there for days on thin mats waiting for their turn. Volunteers handed out clean clothing and served pasta, as a CBP agent opened and closed the metal gate leading to the United States, just a few tantalisingly short feet away.

      The slowdown of processing “leaves people stranded – in really dangerous situations sometimes – on the other side of the border, and completely violates our obligations under both domestic and international law,” said Katharina Obser, a senior policy adviser at the Women’s Refugee Commission, an NGO that advocates for women, children, and youth displaced by conflict and crisis.

      As a result, some people arrive, find out about the wait, and leave. “We’re fairly certain that those are individuals who then end up crossing the border through other means,” Williams said.

      The DHS Office of the Inspector General came to a similar conclusion, finding that the contradiction between Trump administration rhetoric and policy “may have led asylum seekers at ports of entry to attempt illegal border crossings.”
      Border-wide

      The situation in Nogales, Sonora is far from isolated, according to Boyd of the AILA. “Recent turnbacks of vulnerable asylum seekers have been documented throughout the US southern border,” he said, including at many ports of entry in Texas and California. In those states, asylum seekers have reported being stopped as they approach the border and told they cannot enter because immigration officials don’t have the capacity to process their claims.

      “Turnbacks form part of a comprehensive set of practices and policies advanced under this administration that appears aimed at shutting out asylum seekers from the United States,” Boyd continued.

      Meanwhile, people like Dolores Alzuri – and most likely some of the thousands of Central Americans who are travelling north from Honduras in the hope of claiming asylum – are left with little choice but to wait. Moving somewhere else in Mexico or returning home is not an option, said Alzuri. “The violence is the same in every state,” she said. And crossing the desert, “that’s a big danger.”

      She and her family don’t have a back-up plan. “Let’s hope that I do get [asylum], because I really do need it,” she said. “You don’t live comfortably in your own country anymore. You live in fear that something will happen to you. You can’t walk around on the streets because you feel that you’re being followed.”

      https://www.irinnews.org/news-feature/2018/10/29/latin-american-asylum-seekers-hit-us-policy-wall
      #USA #Etats-Unis #fermeture_des_frontières #Mexique

      Commentaire Emmanuel Blanchar via la mailing-list Migreurop:

      Un article intéressant car il rappelle opportunément que la « caravane des migrants » en route vers les Etats-Unis est également composée de nombreuses personnes qui souhaiteraient pouvoir déposer des demandes d’asile. Or, si la frontières Mexique-USA est loin d’être encore mûrées, un mur administratif empêche déjà que les demandes d’asile puisse être déposées et traitées dans le respect des droits des requérant.e.s.

      #mur_administratif #asile

    • No es una caravana, es un dolor que camina

      La caravana de migrantes es sólo la primera manifestación pública y masiva de la crisis humanitaria en la que vive la mayoría de la población; negada por el gobierno, por la oligarquía, embajadas, organizaciones de la sociedad civil y por algunas agencias de cooperación que le hacen comparsa a la dictadura.

      Esta crisis humanitaria es provocada por el modelo económico neoliberal impuesto a sangre y fuego, que sólo pobreza y violencia ha llevado a las comunidades, que ante la ausencia de oportunidades y ante el acoso de los grupos criminales no tienen otra alternativa que la peligrosa e incierta ruta migratoria; prefieren morir en el camino que en sus barrios y colonias.

      El infierno en que se ha convertido Honduras tiene varios responsables. En primer el lugar el imperialismo, que a través de su embajada promueve la inestabilidad política en el país con el apoyo directo al dictador, que para granjearse ese apoyo les ha entregado el país, hasta el grado del despojo y de la ignominia, como puede observarse en los foros internacionales.

      Otro responsable es el dictador, que además de la incertidumbre que genera en lo económico, en lo político y en lo social, ha profundizado y llevado al extremo las políticas neoliberales, despojando de sus recursos a comunidades enteras, para dárselas a las transnacionales, principalmente norteamericanas y canadienses.

      La oligarquía corrupta, mediocre, salvaje, inepta y rapaz también es responsable de esta crisis humanitaria, quien se ha acostumbrado a vivir del presupuesto nacional a tal grado de convertir al Estado en su patrimonio, por medio de un ejército de ocupación, de diputados y presidentes serviles y títeres, que toman las decisiones no para el pueblo, sino que para sus insaciables intereses.

      Hay otro actor importante en esta crisis y es el Ejército Nacional, fiel sirviente de los intereses imperiales y de la oligarquía, que sólo sirve para consumir una gran tajada del presupuesto nacional y más que un ejército defensor y garante de la soberanía nacional es una fuerza de ocupación; listo para asesinar, torturar y matar aquellos que se oponen al dictador, al imperio y la oligarquía.

      Desgraciadamente esta caravana la conforman los miserables, los desheredados de la tierra, los parias: “los que crían querubes para el presidio y serafines para el burdel” como dijo en su poema, Los Parias, el poeta mexicano Salvador Díaz Mirón.

      Estos miserables y desheredados no huyen de la patria, la aman, la adoran y la llevan convertida en un dolor sobre sus hombros, huyen de los verdugos y carniceros que nos gobiernan y de los otros responsables de esta crisis humanitaria. Los que huyen aman a esta tierra más que los que nos quedamos.

      https://criterio.hn/2018/10/29/no-es-una-caravana-es-un-dolor-que-camina
      #douleur

    • WALKING, NOT FLOWING : THE MIGRANT CARAVAN AND THE GEOINFRASTRUCTURING OF UNEQUAL MOBILITY

      In 2015 our TV screens, newspapers and social media were full of stories about ‘flows’ of migrants ‘pouring’ into Europe, set alongside photos and videos of people packed into boats at sea or meandering in long lines across fields. This vocabulary, and the images that accompanied it, suggested that migration was a natural force: like a flow of water that cannot be stopped, governed only by the forces of gravity. Now, this same language is being used to describe the ‘migrant caravan’ of the thousands of Hondurans leaving the violence of their home country and attempting to journey to the US.

      This essay began life as an angry Twitter thread, hastily tapped out with my morning coffee. I argued that people were not flowing, but rather walking. In this Twitter thread, I tried to forge a connection between the how of the journey—noting both the material and geographical aspects impacting and structuring how people move—and the physical impacts of that journey on the bodies of those on the move. I called attention to the travelers’ tired, blistered feet in an attempt to weave a thread between the material (and political) geographies of the journey and the embodied experiences of those making it. The Twitter thread drew some attention and solicited an invitation to write a short intervention for the small Dutch critical-journalism platform De Nieuwe Reporterwhere it appeared in Dutch with the title: “Dit is waarom media niet moeten schrijven over ‘migrantenstromen’” (“This is why the media should not write about ‘migrant flows’”).

      Time has passed since I wrote the intervention. Since then, the caravan has journeyed to the US-Mexico border. US and Mexican authorities have responded with tear gas and closures, highlighting in clear terms the violence of the border and corresponding mobility governance. This violence is too often obscured by talk of flows: in the intervention, I worked hard to make visible what watery metaphors of ‘flow’ do to shape how we think about migrant mobilities and what is lost in their usage. I attempted to highlight the uneven politics of mobility that is shaped by and made visible through a consideration of what I want to call geoinfrastructuring, alongside the embodied effects of this uneven mobility. Here, in contrast to modernity’s quest for faster, more convenient, more efficient modes of travel to overcome the limits of the body as it encounters and moves through space, the migrant caravan’s mode(s) of travel—walking, stopping, starting, bus hopping, sitting, waiting, sleeping—bring into sharp relief the ways that for those excluded from privileged mobility regimes, the body is in intimate concert with the material world it encounters.

      The remainder of this essay will first reproduce the short intervention I wrote for De Nieuwe Reporter before thinking through more conceptually how this opinion piece relates to scholarly work on mobility and infrastructures.

      What we call things matters (while often invisibilizing how they matter). A Reuters report on the status of the migrant caravan in English from October 21st had the headline “Thousands in U.S.-bound migrant caravan pour into Mexican city”, while two days earlier a report by Reuters had talked about a “bedraggled” migrant “surge” attempting to “breach” the Mexican border. Meanwhile in other news outlets, the watery theme continued with a migrant “storm” in the UK’s Daily Mail, and a “wave” in USA Today. And lest we think this was a something restricted to reporting in the Global North, the Latin American press has not been immune, with Venezuela’s Telesur talking of a “second wave of migration.” Meanwhile in the Dutch language media, De Telegraafwrote of “Grote migrantenstromen trekken naar VS”, the headline handily highlighted in red in case the emergency nature of these “migrantenstromen” was not clear.

      A counterpoint was offered by oneworld.nl, who talked of the dehumanizing effects of such language use. Indeed, what we call things matters, because politicians also echo the language of the media creating a self-re-enforcing migration language. Unsurprisingly Trump has talked of flows in his condemnation of the Honduran migrant caravan, while Mark Rutte earlier this year talked about Europe not being ready for a new “migrantenstroom” (“migrant flow”). However, what we call things also matters as much for what it reveals as what it conceals. The widespread use of watery and other natural metaphors when talking about migration journeys hides both the realities of and the reasons for the people’s journeys. To talk of rivers, streams, floods, and flows masks the experiences of the thousands of people who are walking thousands of kilometers. They are walking along roads, up hills and across borders; they are tired and hungry, and their feet hurt. Many are travelling with children as people are leaving lives of poverty and deadly gang violence and looking for a safe future in the United States. Just as the British-Somali refugee poet Warshan Shire urges us to consider that “No one would put their children in a boat unless the water is safer than the land”, in the case of the Honduran migrant caravan it’s very unlikely that anyone would walk thousands of kilometers unless the road was safer than their homes.

      One of those travelling is Orellana, an unemployed domestic worker travelling with her two five-year-old grandsons. She declared she had no choice after the boys’ father was murdered and she “[Could not] feed them anymore”, and she is too old to get a job herself. Orellana has decided to try and get to Texas where her daughter, who migrated three years before, now lives.

      What the watery metaphors also hide is the agency of Hondurans like Orellana in attempting the journey and what the decision to travel in such a large group tells us about the realities of the journey itself. While the migrant caravan is walking to ostensible safety, the northbound journeys of Central American migrants through Mexico to the US are not safe. Many thousands attempt this journey every year, encountering detention and extortion by the police and drug cartels, physical violence, rape, and death. The policing of Mexico’s southern border, undertaken with the support of the US, does not only capture migrants in its net. Mexicans of indigenous appearance, suspected of being from Guatemala, Honduras or El Salvador because of crude processes of racial profiling, are routinely caught up in and detained in police patrols and at police checkpoints. In all this, women and teenagers are at particular risk. The risks of the journey are the reasons underpinning the choice of the Hondurans to travel in a caravan—the idea being that the greater the number of people, the lower the risk of capture and deportation, of physical harm from police, cartels and criminals along the route, and of being stopped by border controls. Moving in a caravan also removes the need to employ the services of smugglers who are often linked to cartels and are a source of the violence migrants face. In other words, people are reclaiming the right to move without paying large sums of money.

      Talk of “flows” also hides the way the journeys of migrants are shaped by the infrastructures of their travel. Roads direct migrants in particular directions and border controls interrupt their movement and divert them into using different paths. Unlike a river, they are not a force of nature that can make their way to their metaphorical sea by the quickest and most efficient route possible. The obstacles migrants encounter on their journey are not only natural obstacles like rivers, deserts, or mountains, but also human-made obstacles like police roadblocks, border control points and migrant prisons.

      And yet in the face of all this, they still walk. Faced with the difficulties of the journey and the promise of repatriation, some have already returned to Honduras. But many in the caravan have now crossed two national borders, with Guatemala and Mexico. Their numbers are growing as many people see the strength in numbers and the difficulty, both practically and politically, of preventing passage. Many others still are left sleeping on bridges, hungry and thirsty with little access to sanitation or shelter as they wait to enter Mexico. And yet they walk, they wait, and more join because “It’s even worse in Honduras.”

      In my work on humanitarian borderwork I have begun to argue for a deeper focus on the ways infrastructures and geographies intimately shape not only the risks faced by those excluded from safe and legal travel but also how the excluded move (Pallister-Wilkins, 2018, 2019). This builds on William Walter’s earlier demand that studies of migration take the journey seriously:

      The vehicle, its road, its route—these particular materialities are not entirely missing from scholarship on migration politics. But… they rarely feature as a central focus in theorisation and investigation of migration worlds. This is surely a paradox. All migrations involve journeys and those journeys are more often than not mediated by complex transport infrastructures, authorities and norms of transportation. Granted, in many instances those journeys may be rather uneventful and not in the least bit life-changing or politically salient… Nevertheless, in many other instances, the journey is politically salient, perhaps even a life-or-death experience. (2015: 270)

      Alongside taking the journey seriously, Mimi Sheller’s important work has shone a light on systems of ‘motility’, differential mobility capability, and mobility justice (2018) and Vicki Squire has drawn our attention to the biophysical role of deserts and seas in governing mobility (2016). Therefore, a focus on the journey and differential mobility capabilities challenges the watery metaphor of ‘flow,’ compelling us instead to understand how infrastructures and geographies—roads, bridges, deserts, mountains, border controls, police patrols, walls and fences, time and speed — make possible and condition particular types of mobility with embodied effects.

      Infrastructures here, following Lauren Berlant (2016), are defined by use (and movement) coming to pattern social life. They are what organizes life. As such they are agents in the (re)production of social inequalities (Donovan, 2015) and uneven geographies (Chua et. al, 2018). Alongside the way infrastructures pattern social life, consideration of infrastructuring offers a dynamic way of understanding the how of unequal mobility beyond the crafting of policy, enabling a greater consideration of infrastructure as something dynamic and mutable in the context of use. Infrastructures are not all encountered or utilized equally. A road driven is not the same as a road walked. Moreover, in thinking about context and use, Deborah Cowen (2014) has drawn our attention to the ways infrastructure, such as complex systems of just-in-time logistics, not only works to overcome the limits of space and time, but also offers opportunities for disruption and resistance. The essays in the “Investigating Infrastructures” Forum on this site show the role of infrastructures in crafting and reinforcing uneven geographies.

      With this in mind, I also want to consider the role of physical geography as an active agent working along with border, policing, and transport infrastructures in conditioning the how of unequal mobility as well as the embodied risks migrants face. The exclusive and privileged nature of various (safer) transport infrastructures and the growth of differential mobility regimes results in physical geographies and their attendant risks coming to matter to what Karen Barad would call matter (2003), in this instance to human life and well-being. In these instances, physical geographies have been politically made to matter through various policies underpinning mobility access and they come to matter at the level of the individual migrant bodies that encounter them.

      Infrastructural projects—roads, railways, and shipping routes—are all attempts to overcome the limits of physical geography. Planes and their attendant infrastructures of airports, airlines, runways and air traffic control make the traversal of great distance and the geographies of seas, mountains, and deserts possible and less risky. By making air travel exclusive, not through cost alone but through border regimes that deny access to those without the correct documentation, physical geography comes to matter more. Those seeking life through movement are increasingly prevented from accessing such transport. Thus, at the level of individual bodies and the journeys they make, the physical geography of the route comes to play a greater constitutive role. As Mimi Sheller makes clear, “There is a relation between personal bodily vulnerabilities, the struggle for shelter, the splintering of infrastructural systems, and the management of citizenship regimes and borders” (2018: xiv).

      Infrastructural projects such as roads, railways, and runways suggest attempts to overcome the limits of physical geography and yet are also intimately shaped by them. Mountain roads, for example, contain hairpin bends necessitated by the gradient of the slopes they cross. Bridges span rivers where such engineering can practically and safely take place. Meanwhile, a lack of roads or bridges impedes mobility, encouraging migrants to use boats, to swim, or like the Rohingya’s journeys from Rakhine into Bangladesh, to use the small narrow dykes that have shaped the environment of the wetlands of the Naf River delta.

      As John Law noted in his study of the possibilities that the Portuguese ship created for long distance control and an apparent human-technological triumph over space, the physical geographies of the ocean—“the winds and currents”—are an ever-present actor working in concert with infrastructure networks (1986). According to Law, it is not possible to think about these infrastructural networks and the social, political, and economic forces they represent and bring into being without a consideration of what he calls the natural, or what I am calling physical geography. The nature of concern to Law is very different from the natural world evoked by discussion of migrant flows and the wide variety of attendant watery metaphors. In these discussions, flow is a description. For Law, flow would have and perform a relational role. This relational ontology becomes even more politically pressing when the natural has embodied effects on the lives of migrants bound up in such a relational system. Put simply, the physical geography alongside infrastructures affects how people move and the risks they encounter on their journeys.

      Therefore, geoinfrastructuring, I argue, is important in considering how people exercise mobility. Geoinfrastructuring both conditions the journey of the migrant caravan and creates particular embodied effects, such as sore feet, blisters, joint pain, sprained muscles, and dehydration. Moments of enforced waiting on the journey, such as at border crossing points, generate their own embodied risks due to poor sanitation, lack of access to clean drinking water, and exposure to extreme weather, which in turn creates the need for as well as the time and space for limited humanitarian relief (see Pallister-Wilkins, 2018). However, as the migrant caravan attests, geoinfrastructure also creates the possibility for a (conditioned) resistance to exclusionary political-material mobility regimes. Infrastructural spaces and systems—roads, transit areas, buses and pick-up trucks—are being claimed and used by Honduran migrants in their journeys to the United States. In Europe and in the context of my own research, one of the key architects of Médecins Sans Frontiéres’ Search and Rescue operations has impressed upon me the important interrelation of the sea, infrastructures of surveillance and visibility, and the boat in making possible humanitarian efforts not only at saving lives but in addition the “activist” element of such search and rescue. Here, the dynamics of the sea, in concert with European border surveillance systems such as EUROSUR and the boat, make possible certain political interventions and disruptions that, it is argued, are not possible in other environments such as the Sahara and speak to Law’s idea of a relational ontology.[1]

      Away from the migrant caravan and my own research on search and rescue in the Mediterranean, I have become interested in exploring the relationship between physical, infrastructural and border geographies in how migrants choose to cross the Alps from Italy into France. These crossings occur at only a few points along the border, at crossing points that are manageable to migrants with differential mobility capabilities. Importantly, they are less risky than other crossing points due to lower altitude, better transport connections and a reduced police presence, such as at the Col de l’Échelle between the Italian town of Bardonecchia and the French city of Briançon. People do not cross through these places for lack of other routes. The town of Bardonecchia, for example, is located at the Italian entrance of both the Fréjus tunnel linking France and Italy, carrying motor vehicles under the Alps, and the older Mont Cenis tunnel linking France and Italy by rail. The entry point to the Fréjus and the trains using the Mont Cenis are heavily policed. The policing of the Fréjus tunnel is further made easier by traffic having to stop and pass through toll booths. And yet, the presence of the railway and its attendant station in Bardonecchia means that it is relatively accessible for migrants travelling from the rest of Italy. Its proximity to the French border, only 7km and a relatively gentle walk away, means that this particular border region has become a particularly popular passage point for migrants wanting to leave Italy for France.

      I have come to know this region well through its additional and complimentary infrastructures of tourism. The cross-border region is a popular holiday destination for people like me who are drawn there by the geoinfrastructure that makes for excellent cycling terrain. This tourism infrastructure for both summer and winter Alpine sports and outdoor activities means that the area is comparatively heavily populated for the Hautes-Alpes. This has resulted in services capable and willing to assist migrants with their journeys, from dedicated and well-equipped teams of mountain rescuers, to a large hospital specializing in mountain injuries, and solidarity activists offering food and shelter. In this region of the Hautes-Alpes, geoinfrastructuring, like with the migrant caravan, shapes not only how and why migrants make their journeys in particular ways: it also facilitates the exercising of political resistance to exclusionary border regimes by both migrants themselves and those who stand in solidarity with them.

      With this short essay I have attempted to challenge the language of flows and in so doing drawn attention to the constitutive role of infrastructures and their embodied effects in how migrants, excluded from safe and legal forms of transportation, exercise mobility. I have argued that as political geographers we should also consider the role of physical geography in making a difference in these journeys that occur in concert with roads, rivers, mountains, deserts, tunnels, bridges and vehicles. These physical geographies, as Vicki Squire argues, have biophysical effects. This is not to normalize the very real bodily dangers faced by migrants in their journeys by seeking to lay blame at the foot of the mountain, so to speak. Instead, it is to suggest that these physical geographies come to matter and have very real effects because of the political role ascribed to them by human decision-making concerned with (re)producing unequal mobility. It is to make the case for what I have termed here geoinfrastructuring—the assemblage of physical, material and political geographies—that shape how migrants move and the risks they face.

      http://societyandspace.org/2019/02/21/walking-not-flowing-the-migrant-caravan-and-the-geoinfrastructuring

    • Quand les caravanes passent…

      Depuis l’intégration du Mexique à l’Espace de libre-échange nord- américain, la question migratoire est devenue centrale dans ses relations avec les États-Unis, dans une perspective de plus en plus sécuritaire. Sa frontière méridionale constitue le point de convergence des migrations des pays du sud vers les pays nord-américains. Les caravanes de migrants, qui traversent son territoire depuis la fin 2018, traduisent une façon de rompre avec la clandestinité autant qu’une protection contre les périls de la traversée ; elles sont aussi l’expression d’une geste politique.

      Le Mexique occupe dans la stratégie de sécurisation des frontières américaines un rôle pivot, à la fois un État tampon et un relais du processus d’externalisation du contrôle des frontières dans l’espace méso-américain. Si l’attention médiatique tend à se focaliser sur les 3 000 kilomètres de frontières qu’il partage avec son voisin du nord, sa frontière sud catalyse les enjeux géopolitiques du contrôle des flux dans la région.

      Depuis son intégration à l’espace de libre-échange nord-américain au cours des années 1990, le Mexique a vu s’imposer la question migratoire dans ses relations diplomatiques avec les États-Unis. L’objectif d’une régulation du passage des frontières par le blocage des flux illicites, de biens ou de personnes, est devenu un élément central de la coopération bilatérale, a fortiori après le 11 septembre 2001. La frontière sud, longue de près de 1 000 kilomètres, circonscrit l’espace de libre circulation formé en 2006 par le Nicaragua, le Honduras, le Salvador et le Guatemala. Elle constitue le point de convergence des migrations en direction des pays nord-américains.
      Faire frontière

      Dans les années 2000, les autorités mexicaines ont donc élaboré une stratégie de surveillance fondée sur la mise en place de cordons sécuritaires [1], depuis l’isthme de Tehuantepec jusqu’à la frontière sud, bordée par une zone forestière difficilement contrôlable. Responsable de l’examen du droit au séjour, l’Institut national de migration (INM) est devenu en 2005 une « agence de sécurité nationale » : la question migratoire est depuis lors envisagée dans cette optique sécuritaire. Des « centres de gestion globale du transit frontalier » [centro de atención integral al tránsito fronterizo] ont été construits à une cinquantaine de kilomètres de la frontière sud. Chargées de filtrer les marchandises comme les individus, ces mégastructures regroupent des agents de l’armée, de la marine, de la police fédérale, de la migration et du bureau fédéral du Procureur général. En 2014, la surveillance des déplacements a été confortée par l’adoption du « Programme Frontière sud », à l’issue d’une rencontre entre le président Peña Nieto et son homologue américain, mécontent de l’inaction du Mexique face à l’afflux de mineurs à leur frontière commune. Derrière le vernis humanitaire de la protection des personnes, la détention et l’expulsion sont érigées en objectifs politiques. Fin 2016, les placements en rétention avaient augmenté de 85 %, les expulsions doublé. Proche de la frontière guatémaltèque, le centre de rétention de Tapachula, décrit comme le plus moderne et le plus grand d’Amérique centrale [2], concentre près de la moitié des expulsions organisées par le Mexique. Avec ceux des États de Tabasco et de Veracruz, ce sont plus de 70 % des renvois qui sont mis en œuvre depuis cette région. De multiples rapports associatifs font état de l’augmentation des drames humains liés à ces dispositifs qui aboutissent, de fait, à une clandestinisation de la migration et rendent les routes migratoires plus dangereuses.

      La migration a également été incorporée aux multiples programmes américains de coopération visant à lutter contre les trafics illicites, la criminalité transfrontalière et le terrorisme. Ces programmes n’ont eu d’autre effet que de faire des personnes en route vers le nord une nouvelle manne financière pour les organisations criminelles qui contrôlent ces espaces de circulation transnationale. La traversée de la frontière américaine guidée par un passeur coûterait 3 500 dollars, les prix variant en fonction de la « méthode ». Le passage par la « grande porte », à l’un des points officiels d’entrée sur le territoire américain, s’achèterait 18 000 dollars. Mais les cartels recrutent aussi des migrant·es pour convoyer plusieurs dizaines de kilos de drogue sur le territoire américain, des « mules » payées 2 000 dollars si elles y parviennent. L’extorsion, la prise d’otages et le travail forcé des migrant·es en transit vers les États-Unis figurent parmi les pratiques des cartels, avec parfois la complicité des agents de l’État. En 2011, des personnes en instance d’expulsion ont ainsi été vendues par des fonctionnaires de l’INM au cartel des Zetas contre 400 dollars par personne.

      Se donnant entre autres objectifs de « construire la frontière du xxiesiècle », l’Initiative Mérida a investi plus de 2,8 milliards de dollars depuis 2007 dans le renforcement d’infrastructures, la technologie du contrôle – dont l’échange avec la partie nord-américaine des données biométriques des personnes placées en rétention – et l’organisation d’opérations policières à la frontière avec le Guatemala. Ce programme finance aussi l’expulsion de ressortissants centraméricains ou extracontinentaux par le Mexique (20 millions de dollars en 2018).

      Dans une certaine mesure, ces dispositifs font système, au point que certains chercheurs [3] parlent du corridor migratoire mexicain comme d’une « frontière verticale ».
      Des caravanes pas comme les autres

      Du premier groupe constitué d’une centaine de personnes parties du Honduras en octobre 2018 aux divers collectifs formés en cours de route vers la frontière nord-américaine par des milliers d’individus venant d’Amérique centrale, de la Caraïbe et, dans une moindre mesure, des continents africain et asiatique, ce qu’il est désormais convenu d’appeler des « caravanes de migrants » constitue un phénomène inédit.

      Dans l’histoire centraméricaine, la notion renvoie à une pluralité de mobilisations, telle celle des mères de migrant·es disparu·es au cours de la traversée du Mexique, qui chaque année parcourent cette route à la recherche de leurs fils ou filles. Le Viacrucis migrante, « chemin de croix du migrant », réunit annuellement des sans-papiers centraméricain·es et des organisations de droits de l’Homme afin de réclamer la poursuite des auteur·es de violations des droits des migrant·es en transit au Mexique, séquestrations, racket, assassinats, viols, féminicides, exploitation ou tous autres abus.

      La première caravane de migrants du Honduras et celles qui lui ont succédé s’inscrivent dans une autre démarche. Elles traduisent une façon de rompre avec la clandestinité imposée par les politiques autant qu’une forme de protection contre les périls de la traversée. Le nombre des marcheurs a créé un nouveau rapport de force dans la remise en cause des frontières. Entre octobre 2018 et février 2019, plus de 30 000 personnes réunies en caravanes ont été enregistrées à la frontière sud du Mexique mais, chaque jour, elles sont des milliers à entrer clandestinement. Entre janvier et mars 2019, les États-Unis ont recensé plus de 234 000 entrées sur leur territoire, le plus souvent hors des points d’entrée officiels.

      Ces caravanes ont aussi révélé un phénomène jusqu’alors peu visible : l’exode centraméricain. Depuis les années 2000, près de 400 000 personnes par an, originaires du Honduras, du Salvador, du Guatemala, migrent aux États- Unis. Fuyant des États corrompus et autoritaires, une violence endé- mique et multiforme, dont celle des maras (gangs) et des cartels, ainsi que les effets délétères du modèle extractiviste néolibéral, elles quittent des pays qui, selon elles, n’ont rien à leur offrir.

      Ces migrations ne doivent pas être appréhendées de façon monolithique : les caravanes constituent une juxtaposition de situations diverses ; les groupes se font et se transforment au cours de la route, au gré des attentes de chacun. Certains ont préféré régulariser leur situation dès l’entrée sur le territoire mexicain quand d’autres ont choisi de pousser jusqu’à la frontière nord, d’où ils ont engagé des démarches auprès des autorités mexicaines et américaines.
      Du Nord au Sud, la fabrique d’une « crise migratoire »

      En réaction à ces différentes mobilités, le Mexique et les États-Unis ont déployé leurs armées, le premier oscillant entre un accueil humanitaire ad hoc, des pratiques de contention et l’expulsion, ou la facilitation des traversées en direction des États-Unis. Les mesures adoptées tant par les États-Unis que par le Mexique ont participé à l’engorgement des frontières, du sud au nord, créant ainsi la situation de « crise migratoire » qu’ils prétendaient prévenir.

      Sollicité par le gouvernement mexicain avant même l’arrivée de la première caravane sur le territoire des États-Unis, le Haut-Commissariat pour les réfugiés (HCR) a obtenu des fonds de ces derniers pour faciliter l’accès à la procédure d’asile mexicaine. Les États-Unis ont également mobilisé l’Organisation internationale pour les migrations (OIM) pour qu’elle mette en place des campagnes de sensibilisation sur les risques de la traversée, et d’encouragement au retour. Écartant d’emblée la revendication des marcheurs de pouvoir solliciter collectivement l’asile à la frontière américaine, les agents du HCR ont insisté sur la complexité des procédures et la faible probabilité d’obtenir l’asile aux États-Unis, confortant le discours porté par l’OIM. Les organisations mexi- caines de défense des droits des étrangers ne se sont pas saisies du droit comme d’une arme politique de soutien à l’appel des marcheurs à une libre circulation au Mexique et au refuge pour tous aux États-Unis. L’ensemble des discours en direction des caravanes ont convergé en faveur de la promotion de l’installation au Mexique. « À chaque fois, on nous parle de la détention, de l’expulsion… Mais nous, on est là et on va continuer d’avancer ! » a observé l’un des marcheurs.

      Depuis plusieurs années, les obstacles à la traversée clandestine du Mexique ont contribué à l’accroissement des demandes d’asile qui sont, avec la carte de visiteur pour raison humanitaire délivrée par l’INM, l’unique option de régularisation. Entre 2013 et 2018, le nombre de requêtes a augmenté de 2 332 %, passant de 1 269 à 29 600. Cette tendance se poursuit. Au premier semestre 2019, la Commission mexicaine d’aide aux réfugiés (Comar) – équivalent de l’Ofpra français – enregistrait une hausse de 182 % par rapport à la même période en 2018, sans que n’augmentent ses moyens. Elle ne disposait en 2017 que de 28 officiers de protection chargés d’instruire les dossiers. L’année suivante, le HCR a soutenu le recrutement de 29 autres officiers tandis que le gouvernement votait une diminution du budget alloué à la Comar. En février 2018, la Commission nationale des droits de l’Homme révélait que des demandes d’asile déposées en 2016 n’avaient toujours pas été examinées, de même que près de 60 % des requêtes formées en 2017. Aux 33 650 dossiers en attente de traitement, se sont ajoutées plus de 12 700 demandes depuis le début 2019.

      Pour éviter d’être expulsées, les personnes n’ont d’autre choix que de « faire avec » ce système en pleine déliquescence. En décembre 2018, il fallait compter jusqu’à six semaines avant de pouvoir déposer une requête à la Comar de Tapachula, et six mois à l’issue de l’audition pour obtenir une réponse. En attendant, les postulant·es doivent, chaque semaine, attester du maintien de leur demande et, pour survivre, s’en remettre à l’assistance humanitaire offerte dans les lieux d’hébergement tenus par des ecclésiastiques. Conséquence de cette précarisation croissante, le taux d’abandon des demandes d’asile déposées à la Comar dans l’État du Chiapas atteignait 43% en 2017. Nombreux sont ceux et celles qui sollicitent l’asile et le visa humanitaire dans le même temps et, une fois le second obtenu, partent chercher un travail au nord du pays. Afin de réduire l’abandon des demandes d’asile, le HCR verse un pécule durant quatre mois aux personnes jugées « vulnérables », une appréciation subordonnée à son budget. En plus des pointages hebdomadaires auprès des administrations, les bénéficiaires doivent chaque mois attester de leur présence au bureau du HCR pour recevoir ce pécule. Dans cette configuration, la distinction entre les logiques sécuritaire et humanitaire se brouille. Parmi les personnes rencontrées à Tapachula, nombreuses sont celles qui ont souligné l’artifice d’une politique d’assistance qui n’en porte que le nom, à l’exemple de Guillermo, originaire du Salvador : « Pour demander des papiers aujourd’hui, il faut passer d’abord par la mafia des organisations. Tout le monde te parle, chacun te propose son petit discours. Cela me fait penser aux prestidigitateurs au cirque, c’est une illusion.[...] Le HCR dit que la procédure d’asile est longue et qu’on peut en profiter pour faire des formations pour apprendre un nouveau métier [...]. Mais déjà, la plupart ici n’a pas l’argent pour ça et se bat pour vivre et trouver un logement ! Ensuite moi, je dois aller signer chaque mardi à la Comar et chaque vendredi à l’INM, le HCR me propose deux jours de cours de langue par semaine pour apprendre l’anglais, mais ça veut dire quoi ? Cela veut dire qu’on peut juste aller travailler un jour par semaine ?! [...] Ils te font miroiter des choses, ils t’illusionnent ! [...] Le HCR te dit : "Tu ne peux pas sortir du Chiapas." La Comar te dit : "Tu ne peux pas sortir de Tapachula." L’INM te dit : "Si on te chope, on t’expulse." »

      La formation d’un espace de contention au bord de l’implosion au sud du Mexique fait écho à la situation de blocage à la frontière nord du pays, renforcée en novembre 2018 par le plan « Reste au Mexique », mal renommé depuis « Protocole de protection de la migration ». Les États-Unis, qui obligeaient déjà les demandeurs d’asile à s’enregistrer et attendre à la frontière, ont unilatéralement décidé de contraindre les non-Mexicains à retourner au Mexique durant le traitement de leur demande d’asile, à moins qu’ils ne démontrent les risques qu’ils y encourraient.
      Frontières et corruption : une rébellion globale

      Ces derniers mois, les entraves et dénis des droits ont engendré de nouvelles formes de mobilisation des migrant·es originaires de la Caraïbe, d’Afrique et d’Asie, jusqu’alors peu visibles. Les personnes en quête de régularisation se heurtent à la corruption qui gangrène les arcanes de l’État : toute démarche, du franchissement de la frontière en passant par la possibilité d’entrer dans les locaux de l’INM jusqu’à l’obtention d’un formulaire, est sujette à extorsion. La délivrance de l’oficio de salida, permettant à certain·es [4] de traverser le pays en direction des États-Unis, est devenue l’objet d’un racket en 2018. Les agents de l’INM disposent d’intermédiaires chargés de récolter l’argent auprès des migrant·es pour la délivrance de ce sauf-conduit, qui donne une vingtaine de jours pour parvenir à la frontière nord. Les montants varient en fonction des nationalités : un Cubain devra payer 400 dollars, un Pakistanais 200 quand un jeune Congolais parviendra à négocier 70 dollars, 100 étant demandés aux autres Africains. Pour tenter de contourner ce système, des personnes sont restées des journées entières devant l’entrée du centre de rétention, dans l’espoir d’y accéder : le plus souvent, seules les familles finissaient par entrer. En mars 2019, des Cubains, exaspérés d’attendre depuis plusieurs mois, ont tenté d’entrer en force à la délégation de l’INM. Rejoints par des personnes originaires de Haïti, d’Amérique centrale, d’Afrique et d’Asie, ils ont été plus de 2 000 à faire le siège des locaux de l’INM, avant de décider, après plusieurs semaines d’attente vaine, de former la caravane centraméricaine et de la Caraïbe vers la frontière nord.

      Aujourd’hui, l’élan de solidarité qui avait accueilli la première caravane de Honduriens est retombé. Celles et ceux qui continuent leur route en direction du Mexique et des États-Unis ne bénéficient ni de la même couverture médiatique ni du même traitement politique. Les promesses gouvernementales d’accueil sont restées lettre morte. En janvier 2019, l’INM annonçait avoir délivré 11 823 cartes de visiteurs pour raisons humanitaires au cours du mois. En mars, on n’en comptait plus que 1 024. Outre une recrudescence des expulsions, un nouveau « plan de contention » prévoit le renforcement de la présence policière dans l’isthme de Tehuantepec. Cette stratégie se déploie aussi par-delà le territoire puisque les demandes de visa humanitaire devraient désormais se faire depuis le Honduras, le Salvador et le Guatemala.

      Si certains voient dans les caravanes un nouveau paradigme migratoire, une chose est sûre : la contestation des frontières et la défiance envers les États portées par ces mouvements sont l’expression d’une geste politique longtemps déniée à une migration jusqu’alors confinée au silence.

      https://www.gisti.org/spip.php?article6226

    • Primer vuelo “exprés” con 129 hondureños retornados de México

      Tras meses de espera en la frontera norte de México, los hondureños solicitantes de asilo en Estados Unidos comienzan a desesperarse y están pidiendo retornar de forma voluntaria al país, tal y como lo hicieron 129 compatriotas que llegaron hoy por vía aérea a #San_Pedro_Sula.

      El vuelo, organizado por la embajada de Honduras en México y financiado por la Organización Internacional para las Migraciones (#OIM), salió de la ciudad de #Matamoros (Tamaulipas), donde los hondureños llevaban varios meses de espera.

      El embajador de Honduras en México, Alden Rivera Montes, informó que los retornados venían en 55 grupos familiares, constituidos por 32 hombres, 30 mujeres y 65 menores acompañados de sus padres; además, retornaron dos adultos solos.

      Rivera Montes detalló que el nuevo Consulado Móvil de Honduras en Matamoros expidió los salvoconductos para que los compatriotas pudieran salir de México mediante la modalidad de Retorno Voluntario Asistido (AVR) a través de la OIM.

      Aseguró que debido a los altos índices de violencia de esa ciudad mexicana se están haciendo las gestiones para que los hondureños que son devueltos por las autoridades estadounidenses a México, sean trasladados a puntos fronterizos menos vulnerables.

      De la misma manera las autoridades de la embajada de Honduras en México anunciaron que los procesos de atención a los migrantes en situación de espera que deseen regresar voluntariamente a Honduras seguirán abiertos durante los próximos meses y que pronto se habilitará esta misma opción de retorno voluntario desde Nuevo Laredo, Ciudad Juárez y Tijuana.

      ATENCIÓN DIGNA

      El vuelo llegó al aeropuerto sampedrano a las 3:00 de la tarde y posteriormente los compatriotas fueron trasladados Centro de Atención para la Niñez y Familias Migrantes Belén, ubicado en San Pedro Sula.

      En Belén los compatriotas fueron recibidos con un plato de sopa caliente; posteriormente hicieron el Control Biométrico con personal del Instituto Nacional de Migración (INM) y llenaron una ficha socioeconómica para optar a los diferentes programas de reinserción social y de oportunidades que ofrece el gobierno.

      Los menores retornados también reciben atención médica y psicológica; posteriormente, si son menores no acompañados, un grupo de especialistas de la Dirección de Niñez, Adolescencia y Familia (Dinaf) les brinda seguimiento para garantizar que se cumplan sus derechos.

      Asimismo, con el apoyo de la Cruz Roja Hondureña se les brinda una llamada para que puedan comunicarse con sus familiares acá en Honduras, se les proporciona un ticket para que puedan trasladarse a sus lugares de origen y si lo requieren se les brinda un albergue temporal.

      https://www.latribuna.hn/2019/10/09/primer-vuelo-expres-con-129-hondurenos-retornados-de-mexico
      #renvois #expulsions #réfugiés_honduriens #IOM #retour_volontaire

    • Honduran Migrants Return from Mexico with IOM support

      The International Organization for Migration (IOM) organized a charter flight for 126 migrants who expressed their decision to return voluntarily to their country of origin. Fifty-three family groups comprising 33 men, 29 women and 64 children flew on Wednesday (09/10) from the city of Matamoros (Tamaulipas, Mexico) to San Pedro Sula (Honduras).

      IOM deployed all efforts and collaborated closely with the Honduran Embassy in Mexico and with the National Migration Institute of Mexico to arrange for this first charter flight in its Assisted Voluntary Return (AVR) programme.

      In the days preceding departure, with the support of its Shelter Support programme and local partners, IOM provided migrants with accommodation and food. According to its internal protocols, IOM ensured that all migrants were made aware of all processes so that all decisions could be taken based on complete information. Further, IOM verifies that persons who express a desire to return do not face any immediate risks upon arrival.

      “I made the decision to return to my country because of the situation I faced with my son; because promises made to us by the ‘coyotes’ are not fulfilled, and we risk our lives along the way,” said a young mother on board the flight. “When we finally crossed the border into the USA, they took us back to Matamoros in Mexico, where I spent eight days in a shelter. There, we saw IOM and we learned about different options. But I want to see my other daughter now, so I decided to return home.”

      “Something I want to say is that if I ever migrate again, I will look for information before leaving, because many people simply give money which we do not really have to ‘coyotes’ or guides, who takes advantage of us,” said another Honduran migrant who decided to return due to the difficult conditions in the Mexican border city. “After considering our options, we found the shelter supported by IOM who helped us out by giving us food and a place to stay, and the possibility of return.”

      “IOM has been providing support to shelters to increase their capacity along with the option of assisted voluntary returns by bus and commercial flights over the last months,” explained Christopher Gascon, IOM Chief of Mission in Mexico. “This is the first return by charter flight, which offers a better service to migrants who want to return home. We hope to provide many more charter flights in the weeks to come.”

      The IOM Assisted Voluntary Return (AVR) programme offers an alternative for an orderly, safe and dignified voluntary return for migrants. IOM offers humanitarian assistance to those who cannot or do not wish to remain in Mexico. Voluntariness is a key principle of IOM #AVR programmes worldwide.


      https://www.iom.int/news/honduran-migrants-return-mexico-iom-support

  • Canada : Des travailleurs agricoles du Honduras se réfugient dans une église Le Devoir - Sarah R. Champagne
    - 9 Avril 2018

    https://www.ledevoir.com/societe/524760/travailleurs-agricoles-sept-honduriens-refugies-dans-une-eglise

    Sept travailleurs migrants agricoles du #Honduras se sont réfugiés dans une église de Granby. Ils ont tous quitté entre la mi-janvier et la mi-mars l’entreprise d’attrapage de #volailles Équipe Sarrazin et dénoncent les conditions de travail, des atteintes à leur dignité, des lésions professionnelles et des heures de transport non payées.
    Ils espèrent pouvoir rester au #Canada pour obtenir justice devant leur employeur, qu’ils accusent de les avoir poussés à partir, une version démentie par le propriétaire, Yves Sarrazin.
    . . . . . .


    Les travailleurs dénoncent plutôt une industrie où le #travail est extrêmement difficile et faiblement rémunéré. Le travail consiste à attraper jusqu’à plusieurs dizaines de milliers de #poulets par quart de travail, dans des poulaillers appartenant à divers producteurs, et à les mettre dans des cages qui serviront au transport jusqu’à l’abattoir.

    « C’est notre dignité qui souffre », raconte Ronny Asael Miranda. En novembre dernier, il a commencé à vomir et à avoir des vertiges durant un quart de travail de nuit. Le rapport fourni à la CNESST indique qu’il a souffert d’une « infection à campylobacter », une inflammation analogue à la #gastro-entérite causée par le contact avec des volailles.
    Il reproche à son employeur de ne pas avoir fourni de vêtements de protection, ni harnais pour certaines tâches en hauteur, ni gants, ni masque.
    . . . . . . .
    Ever Alexis Mendoza Mateo a aussi arrêté le travail durant un mois à cause de sévères maux de dos, une douleur lombaire qui irradiait dans sa jambe droite, décrit-il. En arrêt de travail à partir du 4 décembre, il a ensuite repris le 9 janvier. Près d’un mois plus tard, en février, il a demandé à son chef d’équipe une journée de congé, « pour calmer la douleur qui était revenue ». La journée même, « à quatre heures de l’après-midi, la secrétaire m’a dit que Michel avait pris la décision de me renvoyer dans mon pays et elle m’a envoyé le billet d’avion. C’est là que j’ai décidé de partir de mon côté », relate-t-il, en présentant le message vocal laissé par celle-ci.
    . . . . . . . . .
    Rémunération
    . . . . . . . . .
    Le prix est établi à 3,60 $ pour 1000 poulets et augmente en fonction de la grosseur des volailles. Le travail s’effectue souvent de nuit, quand les #volatiles sont engourdis par l’obscurité. « Doit pouvoir soulever un poids pouvant aller jusqu’à 15 kilos par main, travail répétitif », indique une offre d’emploi actuellement affichée en ligne par l’Équipe Sarrazin.

    Ainsi, pour 30 000 poulets attrapés en une nuit de six heures et demie, selon son bulletin de #salaire du début janvier, M. Mendoza Mateo a par exemple reçu 108,27 $.

    Pour en arriver à la cadence demandée, il faut faire sept fois par minute ce même mouvement : attraper 5 poulets dans chaque main, 10 au total, et les mettre dans les cages en destination de l’abattoir.
    . . . . . . . .
    Rappelons que les permis de travail temporaire en milieu agricole sont rattachés à un seul employeur. En quittant cet employeur, les travailleurs se retrouvent sans visa de travail et, rapidement, sans statut au Canada.

    Exposés à des persécutions au Honduras et vu la grave crise politique qui s’y déroule, les sept travailleurs réfugiés dans l’église ont aussi déposé des demandes d’asile pour des motifs individuels, indique leur avocate, Me Susan Ramirez. Ces demandes sont présentement en traitement.

    #Canada #Agriculture #esclavage #abattoirs #élevage #alimentation #agro-industrie #viande #agroalimentaire #agrobusiness #civilisation

    • #Canada : Un syndicat de travailleurs agricoles révoqué après désistement des migrants Le Devoir : Lia Lévesque - La Presse canadienne - 13 Avril 2018

      https://www.ledevoir.com/societe/525112/un-syndicat-de-travailleurs-agricoles-revoque-apres-desistement-des-migran

      Le Tribunal administratif du travail a dû révoquer l’accréditation d’un syndicat de #travailleurs_agricoles, après que tous les travailleurs migrants eurent signé une lettre disant ne plus vouloir être syndiqués. C’est l’employeur qui avait déposé la requête pour faire révoquer le syndicat, en leur nom.

      La section locale 501 du syndicat des Travailleurs unis de l’alimentation et du commerce, affilié à la FTQ, avait contesté la requête, affirmant qu’il y avait eu ingérence de l’employeur, Les serres Sagami, et que les lettres n’avaient donc pas été signées de façon libre et volontaire.


      Dans sa décision, le Tribunal s’étonne du fait que ces travailleurs guatémaltèques affirmaient ne plus vouloir du syndicat, notamment parce qu’il leur en coûtait 40 $ par mois, alors qu’ils étaient représentés par une avocate devant le tribunal.

      « Il est étonnant que les salariés démissionnaires, qui ont entrepris les procédures de révocation dans cette affaire, ignorent le montant des honoraires professionnels qu’ils auront à débourser et qu’aucun état de compte ne leur ait été transmis », écrit la juge administrative Irène Zaïkoff.

      Elle a aussi souligné que le témoignage de ces travailleurs devant le tribunal avait été « parfois difficile à suivre, hésitant et comporte des contradictions », qu’ils étaient « à l’évidence intimidés d’être appelés à témoigner ».

      De plus, elle a noté que les travailleurs guatémaltèques avaient joué au soccer, le 4 février en soirée, le jour même de leur désistement collectif du syndicat.

      Le syndicat y voyait « une récompense de la part de l’employeur » pour avoir signé une lettre de désistement — qu’on appelle en droit du travail une lettre de démission du syndicat.

      Pas de preuve
      Malgré cela, le tribunal juge que même s’il fallait conclure que l’employeur a appuyé les travailleurs qui se sont désistés, cela ne fait pas pour autant la preuve qu’il est intervenu avant les démissions et a influencé leur décision.

      Malgré tout, le tribunal a cru les travailleurs, qui ont témoigné du fait qu’ils voulaient se désister parce qu’ils payaient trop d’impôt, que les cotisations syndicales coûtaient 40 $ par mois et qu’ils étaient mécontents du syndicat. Ils ont aussi témoigné du fait qu’il n’y avait pas eu ingérence de la part de l’employeur.

  • Amnesty | Mexique : Des milliers de migrants renvoyés vers une mort possible
    https://asile.ch/2018/03/11/amnesty-mexique-milliers-de-migrants-renvoyes-vers-mort-possible

    Les services mexicains de l’immigration renvoient régulièrement des milliers de citoyens du Honduras, du Salvador et du Guatemala dans leurs pays sans tenir compte des risques qu’ils encourent pour leur vie et leur sécurité à leur retour, et dans de nombreux cas en violation du droit mexicain et international. Texte publié sur le site d’Amnesty […]

  • #Honduras: les #Etats-Unis félicitent Hernandez pour sa réélection - Libération
    http://www.liberation.fr/planete/2017/12/22/honduras-les-etats-unis-felicitent-hernandez-pour-sa-reelection_1618503

    M. Hernandez a été officiellement déclaré dimanche vainqueur du scrutin avec 42,95% de voix contre 41,42% au candidat de la coalition de gauche, Salvador Nasralla, un populaire animateur de télévision sans expérience politique.

    US recognizes disputed Honduras election results
    https://www.apnews.com/6a90990250ef43c4b1a036d393c785f2

    The first results reported by the electoral court after the Nov. 26 election showed Nasralla with a significant lead over Hernandez with nearly 60 percent of the vote counted. Public updates of the count mysteriously stopped for more than a day, and when they resumed, that lead steadily eroded and ultimately reversed in Hernandez’s favor.

    #non-dit #MSM

  • L’informatique, pièce maîtresse de la #Fraude_électorale « style #Honduras »
    https://reflets.info/linformatique-piece-maitresse-de-la-fraude-electorale-style-honduras

    A l’heure des élections 2.0, la fraude électorale « style Honduras » s’avère aussi manifeste que difficile à prouver. Le scrutin présidentiel hondurien a fait l’objet d’une usurpation informatique presque parfaite, que la communauté internationale a finalement […]

    #Monde #Technos #ASICA #Cofadeh #David_Matamoros_Batson #Fraude_informatique #GANAS #Jennifer_Avila #Organisation_des_Etats_américains #Tribunal_suprême_électoral #TSE

  • Un documental para entender lo que está pasando en Honduras - Edición General
    https://www.elsaltodiario.com/el-baul-de-kubrick/un-documental-para-entender-lo-que-pasa-en-honduras
    /uploads/fotos/h1000/e466f4fa/mani_honduras.jpg?v=63679362327

    El 28 de junio de 2009 el presidente del Gobierno de Honduras Manuel Zelaya, veía desde la ventana de su habitación cómo un grupo de paramilitares entraba a tiros en su casa para llevárselo fuera del país. Roberto Michelleti ocuparía su lugar y el presidente electo nunca más volvería a su cargo. El documental Quién dijo miedo cuenta esa historia, las horas posteriores y los intentos de Zelaya de volver al país sin que eso desencadenase ríos de sangre.

    Actualmente, tras unas elecciones presidenciales sobre las que otea el riesgo de fraude, se activó el toque de queda para reprimir revueltas civiles. La situación es tan sensible como la vivida en 2009, en la que ya se han empezado a contabilizar víctimas mortales.

    Aquel golpe de Estado, del que se dice que Hillary Clinton dirigió durante su etapa como secretaria de Estado del gobierno de Obama, fue interpretado como un mensaje para todos aquellos países que buscaran aliarse con los gobiernos progresistas ya afianzados en el sur del continente.

    #honduras
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K0BR_fcLfic

    Le film est sous-titré en anglais.

  • Au Honduras, le pouvoir qui tue le plus d’opposants politiques, le régime putchiste soutenu par les USA et l’UE piétine les urnes
    https://www.initiative-communiste.fr/articles/international/honduras-pouvoir-tue-plus-dopposants-politiques-regime-putchis

    Au Honduras, le régime de putchistes fascistes installé par un coup d’état en 2009 contre Manuel Zellaya légitimement élu essaye de récidiver en piétinant les élections où, à nouveau la gauche progressiste vient de l’emporter.

    Vous ne le verrez pas au journal de France 2, TF1 ou BFM TV. Mélenchon ne sera pas interrogé la dessus par Léa Salamé ou Jean Jacques Bourdin. La censure est totale. Pendant ce temps là, avec le soutien total de Washington, de Bruxelles, mais également des Laurence Debray et autres soutiens de l’extrême droite putchiste qui s’attaque également au Venezuela, à Tegucigalpa, le régime continue d’assassiner et de tirer sur le peuple.

    Au Honduras, la police rallie le peuple et met en échec l’imposition du couvre-feu
    https://blogs.mediapart.fr/kassandra/blog/051217/au-honduras-la-police-rallie-le-peuple-et-met-en-echec-l-imposition-

    L’imposition d’un couvre-feu dans la nuit du 30 novembre, n’a pas freiné l’ardeur des honduriens opposés à la réélection du président-candidat Juan Orlando Hernandez (JOH). La répression laisse un bilan qui s’élève déjà à plusieurs morts. Mais ce 4 décembre, la police s’est rebellée. Les honduriens n’ont pas encore de nouveau président mais déjà la volonté de restaurer l’ordre institutionnel.

    Au Honduras, le coup d’Etat permanent par Maurice Lemoinehttp://www.medelu.org/Au-Honduras-le-coup-d-Etat

    Après plus d’une semaine de retards et d’incidents plus suspects les uns que les autres, le Tribunal suprême électoral (TSE) hondurien a annoncé le 4 décembre les résultats « provisoirement définitifs » de l’élection présidentielle du dimanche 26 novembre dernier. Ceux-ci donneraient la victoire à Juan Orlando Hernández, le président de la droite « post coup d’Etat » en exercice, qui se représentait illégalement, avec 42,98 % des suffrages. Crédité de 41,39 %, Salvador Nasralla, candidat d’une coalition, l’Alliance d’opposition contre la dictature, ayant pour coordonnateur l’ex-chef de l’Etat renversé en 2009 Manuel Zelaya, dénonce une fraude et refuse, avec de bonnes raisons pour le faire, de reconnaître le verdict du TSE. Alors que le pouvoir a décrété l’état d’urgence et que les manifestations se multiplient, un dangereux bras de fer est engagé.

    #Honduras #Répression #Coup_d'Etat #Elections #Amérique_latine

  • Shocking photo shows Caribbean Sea being ’choked to death by human waste’
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2017/10/26/shocking-photo-shows-caribbean-sea-choked-death-human-waste

    Caroline Power, who specialises in underwater photography, has dedicated her career to highlighting the damage plastic waste is doing to our oceans. 

    She said witnessing the plastic blanket of forks, bottles and rubbish between the islands Roatan and Cayos Cochinos, off the coast of #Honduras, was “devastating”.

    #Caraïbes #déchets

  • A Statistical and Demographic Profile of the US Temporary Protected Status Populations from El Salvador, Honduras, and Haiti

    This report presents detailed statistical information on the US Temporary Protected Status (TPS) populations from El Salvador, Honduras, and Haiti. TPS can be granted to noncitizens from designated nations who are unable to return to their countries because of armed conflict, environmental disaster, or other extraordinary and temporary conditions. In January 2017, an estimated 325,000 migrants from 13 TPS-designated countries resided in the United States. This statistical portrait of TPS beneficiaries from El Salvador, Honduras, and Haiti reveals hardworking populations with strong family and other ties to the United States. In addition, high percentages have lived in the United States for 20 years or more, arrived as children, and have US citizen children. The paper finds that:

    The labor force participation rate of the TPS population from the three nations ranges from 81 to 88 percent, which is well above the rate for the total US population (63 percent) and the foreign-born population (66 percent).
    The five leading industries in which TPS beneficiaries from these countries work are: construction (51,700), restaurants and other food services (32,400), landscaping services (15,800), child day care services (10,000), and grocery stores (9,200).
    TPS recipients from these countries live in 206,000 households: 99,000 of these households (almost one-half) have mortgages.
    About 68,000, or 22 percent, of the TPS population from these nations arrived as children under the age of 16.
    TPS beneficiaries from these nations have an estimated 273,000 US citizen children (born in the United States).
    Ten percent of El Salvadoran, nine percent of the Haitian, and six percent of the Honduran TPS beneficiaries are married to a legal resident.
    More than one-half of El Salvadoran and Honduran, and 16 percent of the Haitian TPS beneficiaries have resided in the United States for 20 years or more.
    The six US states with the largest TPS populations from these countries are California (55,000), Texas (45,000), Florida (45,000), New York (26,000), Virginia (24,000), and Maryland (23,000).
    Eighty-seven percent of the TPS population from these countries speaks at least some English, and slightly over one-half speak English well, very well, or only English.
    About 27,000, or 11 percent, of those in the labor force are self-employed, having created jobs for themselves and likely for others as well.

    TPS status should be extended until beneficiaries can safely return home and can successfully reintegrate into their home communities. Most long-term TPS recipients should be afforded a path to lawful permanent resident (LPR) status and ultimately to US citizenship.

    http://cmsny.org/publications/jmhs-tps-elsalvador-honduras-haiti
    #asile #migrations #réfugiés #réfugiés_salvadoriens #réfugiés_honduriens #réfugiés_haïtiens #USA #Etats-Unis #rapport #Haïti #Honduras #El_Salvador #statistiques #chiffres

  • In Honduras, Defending Nature Is a Deadly Business

    #Berta_Cáceres fought to protect native lands in Honduras — and paid for it with her life. She is one of hundreds of victims of a disturbing global trend — the killings of environmental activists who try to block development projects. First in a series.

    http://e360.yale.edu/features/honduras-berta-caceres-murder-activists-environmentalists-at-risk
    #Honduras #décès #protection_de_la_nature #environnement #activistes #résistance #assassinat #peuples_autochtones #terres
    via @albertocampiphoto

  • Honduras: the deadliest country in the world for environmental activism | Global Witness
    https://www.globalwitness.org/en-gb/campaigns/environmental-activists/honduras-deadliest-country-world-environmental-activism

    Nowhere are you more likely to be killed for standing up to companies that grab land and trash the environment than in Honduras.

    More than 120 people have died since 2010, according to Global Witness research. The victims were ordinary people who took a stand against dams, mines, logging or agriculture on their land –murdered by state forces, security guards or hired assassins. Countless others have been threatened, attacked or imprisoned.

    #Honduras #meurtres #activisme #environnement #terres

  • HCR | Après avoir fui la violence domestique, des mamans du Honduras commencent une nouvelle vie au Mexique
    http://asile.ch/2016/12/02/hcr-apres-fui-violence-domestique-mamans-honduras-commencent-nouvelle-vie-mexi

    Après avoir été violées, frappées et abusées par leurs conjoints membres de gangs, des femmes du Honduras trouvent la sécurité au Mexique, où le changement de la loi reconnait que la violence sexiste suffit pour l’octroi du statut de réfugié.