Today, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced that Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras have all signed the Asylum Cooperation Agreement (ACA) and all three ACAs have entered into force. This is a historic milestone for the Trump Administration, Central America, and the American people. During Fiscal Year 2019, more than 71% of migrants apprehended at the U.S. Southwest border came from El Salvador, Guatemala, or Honduras—this ACA agreement confronts illegal migration at the source.
“Under President Trump’s leadership, DHS is using every available tool at its disposal to mitigate the ongoing humanitarian and security crisis at the border,” said Acting Secretary Chad F. Wolf. “Implementation of the agreements will further strengthen the overall asylum capabilities in the Northern Triangle countries and across the region and will allow asylum seekers to access protection closer to their home. I want to thank our partners in Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras for their hard work and leadership to get these agreements across the finish line.”
Now that all three ACAs have entered into force and implementation accords have been concluded, the United States, in coordination with the appropriate participating country, will be able to remove certain eligible migrants seeking humanitarian protection to each of the ACA countries. Through the implementation of the ACAs, the Northern Triangle countries and the United States reaffirm their commitment to combating mutual threats, including transnational criminal organizations and gangs, migrant smuggling, drug trafficking, and human trafficking.
The United States, Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras pledge to promote economic prosperity, regional security and stability, democratic institutions, and the protection of human rights, for the benefit of all nations involved.