Top Biden administration officials huddled with colleagues from 19 countries in the Americas on Tuesday to discuss ongoing efforts to tackle migrant crises.
In a news release, national security adviser Jake Sullivan and Homeland Security advisor Liz Sherwood-Randall said the countries launched the implementation process of the Los Angeles Declaration on Migration and Protection (LADMP), which was born from the Summit of the Americas in June.
Countries in attendance at the meeting included Brazil, Canada, Colombia, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras and Mexico.
In their remarks at the meeting, Sullivan and Sherwood-Randall noted the dramatic changes to irregular migration and force displacement in recent decades “requiring new, coordinated regional solutions to meet a growing challenge,” according to a readout from the White House.
It added that the countries present “reaffirmed their readiness to deepen cooperation and align policies to reduce irregular migration.”
The LADMP initiative was first announced by President Biden and fellow world leaders earlier this year at the Summit of the Americas.
Mexico declined to attend the summit over the exclusion of Cuba, Nicaragua and Venezuela. While Mexico was present at Tuesday’s meeting, representatives of the other countries were not, according to a White House news release.
The Los Angeles Declaration has four main pillars, which include ensuring stability and assistance for communities, promoting legal pathways of migration, having humane border management and coordinating emergency response efforts.
It also aims to provide an expansion of the temporary worker programs to improve the flow of migrants into the U.S. and address worker shortages, as well as expanding legal pathways for migration, such as refugee resettlement and family reunification.
A White House news release on the meeting noted that the U.S. has “significantly expanded refugee resettlement from the region, including for Haitian, Venezuelan, and Nicaraguan nationals” as part of its commitment to the initiative.
The meeting comes as migration has become a prominent issue heading into November’s midterm elections in the U.S. Several GOP governors have sent migrants to northern, Democratic-run cities in protest of Biden’s border policies.
The U.S. and the other countries involved will convene again on the migration initiative at a Los Angeles Declaration meeting of foreign ministers in Lima, Peru, on Oct. 6.
Source: The Hill