Things That Matter

Trump Needs Mexico To Agree To Be “Safe Third Country” So The US Doesn’t Have To Deal With Asylum Seekers

Remember last week when President Donald Trump threatened Mexico with tariffs, and at the last minute, rescinded the threat? Trump said that if Mexico didn’t handle the immigration issue at the border — which is also a U.S. issue — that he would raise tariffs. Now we’re getting somewhat of what went down between Trump and Mexico.

Mexico will now be taking back more asylum seekers that are awaiting trial in the U.S.

Credit: @realDonaldTrump / Twitter

While the “Remain In Mexico” policy is something the Trump Administration recently implemented, the new agreement with Mexico seems that the government will be accepting and tracking the incoming undocumented people.

Luis Carlos Cano, a spokesman for Mexico’s national immigration agency in Ciudad Juarez, told Reuters that last week Mexico accepted 200, which is an increase from the 100 people that returned previously. The publication also reports that an estimated “12,000 people have been returned to Mexico since it began in January.”

Furthermore, Mexico said they have agreed to be a “safe third country.”

Credit: @TheToddSchutle / Twitter

At least that is, according to Trump. The publication states that “asylum seekers who first set foot on Mexican soil would have to apply for refugee status in Mexico instead of in the United States.”

Canada already has such a clause of being a “safe third country,” and the administration wants other countries to do that as well, including Guatemala.

However, just because a country is labeled as a “safe third country” doesn’t mean it is.

Credit: @ramontaylor / Twitter

Human Rights First, a civil rights organization, said in a statement that the Trump Administration is merely passing the buck to not deal with the state of immigration reform. They’re also dangerously allowing other countries to become “safe” places for people that they clearly show are not welcomed.

“Guatemala is not a safe country for refugees,” the organization stated. “It is a country that refugees are fleeing. The U.S. State Department’s own human rights reports reveal that rape, femicide, violence against women, trafficking in persons, violent attacks against LGBTI persons, and gang-recruitment of displaced children are all serious problems in Guatemala. Corruption and extortion are rampant, leaving many people unprotected by the police and other authorities. Refugees returned to Guatemala would not only face dangers in Guatemala, but they would be at grave risk of being sent back to their countries of persecution given the country’s lack of effective systems and capacity for identifying and protecting refugees from deportation.”

This new claim by the administration of a third party plan is just another tactic of not helping asylum seekers.

Recently, the Mexican government’s newly formed Nation Guard began patrolling their southern border.

According to several reports, a recent push by the Mexican government detained 791 migrants. The Central American migrants were found during an operation by the Mexican National Guard when they stopped four trucks in the state of Veracruz.

Mexico has recently stepped up their efforts to curb migration from Central America to the U.S. border by way of Mexico. The Trump administration claims that the response from Mexico comes from the tariff threat made by the president, which would have meant Americans paying more for goods in Mexico.

According to The New York Times, Mexico had agreed to the border enforcement months before Trump publicly threatened tariffs against Mexico. This means that Mexico was already enforcing border security before Trump appealed to his base with a false claim that his tariffs forced Mexico’s hand to enforce their border.

READ: Trump Terrifies Immigrant Community As He Demands To Keep Secret Why He Wants A Citizenship Question On The 2020 Census

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This Indigenous Village In Mexico Trains Their Children As Soldiers To Combat Gang Violence

Things That Matter

This Indigenous Village In Mexico Trains Their Children As Soldiers To Combat Gang Violence

via Getty Images

In the town of Ayahualtempa, Mexico, in the state of Guerrero, reporters see a shocking image whenever they visit. Children armed with guns, trained to defend themselves. The disturbing scene is meant to be shocking. The village of Ayahualtempa is under constant attack. A prominent heroin “corridor”, they are the victims of violence and carnage at the hands of gangsters and the cartel.

In order to gain the Mexican government’s attention, the Ayahualtempa villagers dress their children up as soldiers. Then, they invite the media in.

Ayahualtempa
via Getty Images

When reporters arrive, the children of Ayahualtempa dutifully line up and put on a performance. They march, they show how they would shoot a gun from one knee, or from flat on their bellies. They tell reporters that their mock-violent performance is “so the president sees us and helps us,” as a 12-year-old child named Valentín told the Associated Press.

Because the Mexican government doesn’t protect Ayahualtempa, the display of child soldiers is a form of protest for the small indigenous village. The people of this remote region of Guerrero want protection from the National Guard, and financial help for widows and orphans who have been made so from organized crime.

The villagers don’t trust local authorities, and for good reason. Guerrera is the Mexican state in which 43 teaching students were abducted and killed in an event that is known as the “Iguala mass kidnapping”. Authorities arrested 80 suspects in connection to the event. 44 of them were police officers, working in conjunction with a network of cartels.

Although the demonstrations function largely as a publicity stunt, violence is very much a part of these children’s lives.

via Getty Images

Parents train their children to walk to school with loaded guns, ready to defend themselves against violent gangsters.

The attention-grabbing antics have, to some extent, worked. On one occasion, the government donated some housing material. On another, benefactors gave the community’s orphans and widows scholarships and houses. But as soon as the periodic media storms die down, the federal government continues pretending Ayahualtempa doesn’t exist.

The hypocrisy of the government’s response is frustrating to many. “We’ve normalized that these children don’t eat, are illiterate, are farm workers. We’re used to the Indians dying young, but, ‘How dare they arm them!’” said local human rights activist Abel Barrera to the AP, with a heavy dose of sarcasm.

As for now, until the government moves to protect the community, they say they will continue their demonstrations. “They see that the issue of the children is effective for making people take notice and they think: If that’s what works, we’ll have to keep doing it,” said Barrera.

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Spanish Voiceover Actress For Jessie From Pokémon Dies And Fans Mourn

Entertainment

Spanish Voiceover Actress For Jessie From Pokémon Dies And Fans Mourn

Pokémon fans in Latin America are mourning the death of Diana Pérez, the Spanish-language voice of Jessie of Pokémon’s Team Rocket. The voice actress has been voicing the character since 1997.

Diana Pérez, the voice actress of Team Rocket’s Jessie, died at 51.

Lalo Garza, a famed voice actor in Mexico, confirmed the death of the Pokémon voice actress.

“Rest in peace Diana Pérez, a strong, cultured, intelligent, and very talented woman. You are good now, friend. Nothing hurts anymore. Have a good trip,” reads the tweet.

Pérez has been a staple in the Spanish-language Pokémon fandom for decades.

Pérez was more than just he voice of Jessie. The voice actress was the voice of multiple anime characters including Luffy in One Piece and Kagura in Inuyasha. In recent years, Pérez had started branching out to directing, producing, and other branches in the entertainment industry.

Pérez’s death is being mourned by Pokémon fans outside of the Spanish-language fandom.

Sarah Natochenny is the English voice of Ash Ketchum in the Pokémon series, Jessie’s mortal enemy. The death of Pérez has impacted the larger Pokémon community. Pérez was a pivotal part of the Latin American Pokémon community for decades and her loss has devastated fans.

Descansa en paz, Diana.

There have been no plans announced for a replacement to voice Team Rocket’s Jessie. No official cause of death has been released either. Our hearts and thoughts go out to Pérez’s family and the greater Pokémon community mourning her passing.

READ: I Was Today Years Old When I Found Out This Mexican Pokémon

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