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President Donald Trump on Tuesday gave the White House media a glimpse of a document he said was his agreement with Mexico to limit the flow of migrants coming from Central America through Mexico to the U.S.
Trump spoke to the media for a few minutes on the South Lawn of the White House prior to his departure for Iowa.
During the news conference, he pulled out a piece of paper.
“That’s the agreement that everybody says I don’t have,” he said, referring to critics who have claimed no deal with Mexico was reached last week.
“This will go into effect, and it’s my option,” Trump said, according to a White House transcript of his remarks. “It’s not Mexico’s. But it will go into effect when Mexico tells me it’s okay to release it.
“It goes into effect at my option,” the president added.
Trump was asked if he would share the contents.
“So, no, because I’m going to let Mexico do the announcement at the right time. For Mexico, they want to go through it. But here’s the agreement. It’s a very simple agreement. This is one page. This is one page of a very long and very good agreement for both Mexico and the United States,” Trump said.
Trump then tweaked the media as he flashed the document.
“So here’s your thing. You know, they all say, ‘Oh, he doesn’t …’ I just give you my word inside here. And I would love to do it. But you will freeze-action it. You will stop it. You will analyze it. Every single letter you’ll see. But in here is the agreement,” Trump said.
The media did indeed analyze it.
Reuters noted that reporters could read part of what the document said by viewing a photograph taken as Trump waved it about.
“The U.S.-Mexico migration deal includes a regional asylum plan and Mexico’s commitment to examine and potentially change its laws to implement the agreement,” according to Reuters, which cited the photo.
The deal seeks “a regional approach to burden-sharing in relation to the processing of refugee status claims to migrants,” the document said.
The Washington Post published what it believed the document said, noting areas it said it could not read.
“[UNREADABLE] such agreement would [UNREADABLE] party’s domestic and international legal obligations, a commitment under which each party would accept the return, and process refugee status claims, of third-party nationals who have crossed that party’s territory [UNREADABLE] other party,” The Post said the document read.
“The parties further intend [UNREADABLE] an agreem[ent] [UNREADABLE] to burden-sharing in relation to the processing of refuge[es] [UNREADABLE.”
“Mexico also commits to immediate[ly] [UNREADABLE] domestic laws and regulations with a view to identifying any changes that [UNREADABLE] to bring into force and implement such an agreement,” the document reportedly added.
“If the United States determines, at its discretion and after consultation with Mexico, after 45 calendar days from the date of the issuance of the Join Declaration, that the measures adopted by the Government of Mexico pursuant to the Joint Declaration have not sufficiently achieved results in addressing the flow of migrants to the southern border of the United States, the Government of Mexico will take all necessary steps under the domestic law to bring the agreement into force with a view to ensuring that the agreement will enter into force within 45 days.”
During his news conference, Trump praised Mexico and chided House Democrats.
“Mexico is doing a great job at the border, really helping us,” he said. “We want the Democrats to help us as much as Mexico. And we’ll have absolutely no problem at the border. We’ll clean it up very quickly,” Trump said. “But the agreement with Mexico has been great. They’ve been working very hard. We’re doing very well together. A good relationship.”
The president said his decision to threaten tariffs against Mexican goods produced results.
“Without the tariffs, we would have had nothing,” he said, adding that Mexico was “moving, right now, 6,000 soldiers to their southern border. Who ever heard of that? You think we had that two weeks ago? Two weeks ago, I’ll tell you what we had: We had nothing. And the reason we had nothing is because Mexico felt they didn’t have to give us anything.”
Trump was coy when asked if Mexico was going to become “a safe third country for asylum seekers.”
“I don’t want to say, but you can just figure it out yourself. And the reason is Mexico wants to handle. That would have to go through their legislative body,” he said.
“A lot of people heard they agreed to it. A lot of people are saying that. Good luck. OK? I’m not going to say one way or the other. But I will tell you, right here is the story. You know, I don’t like it when newspapers write fake news, or when reporters, like you, do fake news,” he added.
“I don’t like that. So right here is the agreement. It’s very simple. It’s right here. And in here is everything you want to talk about. Done. It’s done. It’s done. It’s all done.”
But what’s not done, he said, is what Congress has failed to do
“Congress has to get their act together. They have to pass immigration laws. They have to get rid of — I mean, as far as I’m concerned, the most important thing is to get rid of the loopholes, because you have loopholes and asylum problems that they could do in 15 minutes if they wanted to,” Trump said.
“The Democrats in Congress are causing this country tremendous drug problems, tremendous security problems, and they have to get together and they have to work out asylum and the loopholes. It would take, literally, 15 minutes. It’s so simple,” he added.
“What we’re going to do is we’re going to sit down at some point with the Democrats; we’re going to work it all out. It is a quick negotiation. And they know I’m right. They just don’t want to do it politically. They want to have open borders. And open borders means crime. And really, it means crime; it means drugs.”