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U.S., Mexico Fail to Reach Border Security Deal Before Tariffs Deadline
USAgNet - 06/06/2019

American and Mexican negotiators failed to reach a deal Wednesday to prevent punitive U.S. tariffs from going into effect over border security, Trump administration officials told NBC News.

Vice President Mike Pence hosted Mexican Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard, as well as other top U.S. and Mexican officials, at the White House for a meeting on Wednesday that lasted roughly an hour and a half. According to a senior administration official who attended the meeting, the Mexican delegation offered what the White House viewed as a "good faith," if "minimalist," approach to solving the "crisis" at the border.

According to another senior administration official, in order for a deal to be made, the White House is asking Mexico to hold Central American asylum seekers in a "safe third country" designation, rather than letting them cross the US border. Additionally, the White House is also asking Mexico to accept the "Migration Protection Protocols," which require migrants to remain in Mexico until their cases are processed.

The administration official was skeptical that a deal could be struck before the Monday deadline, noting that it was likely tariffs would go into effect.

Trump sparked the last-minute meeting between the two countries after announcing on Twitter that he would impose a 5 percent tariff on all Mexican imports beginning this Monday "until Mexico substantially stops the illegal inflow of aliens coming through its territory." The president warned that the tariffs could increase monthly if the Mexican government failed to adequately address illegal immigration, with the penalties potentially climbing as high as 25 percent.

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