Alejandro Giammattei, elected president, and Enrique Degenhart, Minister of the Interior. (Free Press Photo: Hemeroteca PL)
President-elect Alejandro Giammattei criticized on November 21 that the Minister of the Interior, Enrique Degenhart, has not provided him with information on the immigration agreement with the United States, which was implemented today with the arrival of the first Honduran asylum seeker.
“We just found out about the migrant's arrival in Guatemala. I again call on Minister Degenhart, who has refused to initiate the transition process, to inform us. They have already closed the agreement and we were never – the incoming government – aware, ”said Giammattei at a press conference in Mazatenango.RELATED
He added: “I say publicly to Minister Degenhart that he is playing with fire. He has not wanted to give absolutely no information. He is the only minister – from the Jimmy Morales Cabinet – that has refused, and within that, he is to tell us what the implementation program is. ”
The next ruler demanded that the official provide information on the implementation schedule of the immigration agreement. “What do they plan to do, where are they going to place people – asylum seekers – who will cover the expenses? because we have serious doubts about that, ”he said.
During the morning, in the presence of Degenhart and Foreign Minister Sandra Jovel, a Honduran arrived in Guatemala from the United States and became the first asylum seeker under the Agreement between the United States Government and the Government of Guatemala Regarding the Cooperation Regarding the Examination of Protection Requests (ACA).
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Pedro Brolo, designated Foreign Minister, told Prensa Libre that he is concerned that the third safe country agreement has begun to be executed with the arrival of a Honduran citizen when Guatemala's ability to serve asylees is still unknown.
The future chancellor said that the team that accompanies President-elect Alejandro Giammattei is not aware of the implementation plan of this agreement, because the current Government has not shared the information, as well as the annexes being analyzed. "We only know what has been publicly addressed."
“We have requested information because we are concerned that the country does not have the installed capacity to receive a certain number of refugees or returnees. Nor have we been informed who is going to dispense the resources and how many people negotiated with the US. UU. that will be sent to the country, ”said Brolo.
He informed that the team has talked with the International Organization for Migration (IOM), the United Nations Agency for Refugees (UNHCR) and the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) to find out what the response capacity is that they have to support Guatemala.
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The diplomat warned that a few days ago Acnur issued a press release where he expressed concern that the country does not have the conditions set by international law for the approach being made by the Guatemalan government.
He said he is concerned that initially the authorities had said that the agreement only contemplated Honduran citizens and saviors, but that it is now mentioned that they could come from other countries. "It is important that this issue is clearly defined," he said.
The future chancellor said he is concerned that due to the lack of facilities, migrants sent to the country are not given decent treatment, because they are “human beings and the country must refer to international conventions and commitments signed in this matter "
However, he informed that to confront this problem he has met with the authorities of IOM, Acnur and Unicef to form from January 14 a technical table with the objective of “addressing this migratory problem from the integral point of view”.
The objective will be not only to know the aspect of internal mobility of citizens, but also to determine what are the capacities that these institutions could transfer to designated officials to related positions. "That way we already have the support to establish procedure manuals for the care of children, women and the elderly."
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