HomeNewsBriefSummit on Central American Migrant Children Goes Nowhere
BRIEF

Summit on Central American Migrant Children Goes Nowhere

EL SALVADOR / 17 NOV 2014 BY STEVEN DUDLEY EN

The meeting between Central American Presidents and US Vice President Joe Biden to deal with the crisis of “unaccompanied alien children” (UAC) from that region illustrated the sides remain far apart on policy prescription and how to finance a plan to help stem the flow of migrants northwards.

The meeting, sponsored and hosted by the Inter American Development Bank in Washington DC on November 13, held all the romance of an arranged marriage.

On the one side was Biden, who announced kids in Central America with parents legally in the US could apply for asylum -- an arduous, expensive and time-consuming process that few would likely try.

On the other side were President Juan Orlando Hernandez of Honduras, President Otto Perez Molina of Guatemala, and President Salvador Sanchez Ceren of El Salvador. The three had arrived with an ambitious plan long on buzz words but short on actual details of how to finance what they admit are long-term solutions.

President Hernandez told Reuters in an interview that he was seeking $2 billion, the same as Guatemala. Biden, meanwhile, promised no additional funding for any programs.    

InSight Crime Analysis

Whether you think the UAC come because of economic pressure, family reasons or to flee their crime ridden nations, there are few grounds for believing that the meeting addressed any of those dynamics.

To cite just one example, in a statement, the US State Department said the limit of the number of children and accompanying parents that can be admitted under program Biden announced is 4,000 during the fiscal year that ends September 30, 2015; over 60,000 UAC have been stopped at the US border this year.

For its part, the Central American Presidents’ plan is comprehensive, wide-ranging and holistic. But offers no new means of financing. There is no talk of new taxes or any other drastic measures to produce the type of changes necessary to slow the flow of migration. Instead, the presidents turn to the US and other “allies, multilateral institutions and regional development partners.”

“It’s clear the resources needed to implement the development objectives in this Plan exceed our financial capacity, as well as our ability to finance it via loans,” the Northern Triangle governments wrote.

As if to put an exclamation point on their lack of money, they offer an outline of the plan, with potential funders, and leave it completely blank (see below). 
20141117Cent Am Plan Migrants

What's more, the Northern Triangle presidents seem oblivious to the current US political reality: the Republican Congress set to take control next year is even less inclined to send money to them than this outgoing Congress, which never authorized anything in spite of the flood of unaccompanied children. 

share icon icon icon

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

What are your thoughts? Click here to send InSight Crime your comments.

We encourage readers to copy and distribute our work for non-commercial purposes, with attribution to InSight Crime in the byline and links to the original at both the top and bottom of the article. Check the Creative Commons website for more details of how to share our work, and please send us an email if you use an article.

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

Related Content

HONDURAS / 10 MAR 2014

A criminal group in Honduras is using songs about drug trafficking to glamorize criminal life for child recruits who they…

DISPLACEMENT / 14 JAN 2016

The United States will increase the number of refugees it accepts who are fleeing rampant violence in Central America's Northern…

BARRIO 18 / 10 DEC 2013

Authorities in El Salvador have recovered 19 bodies from secret graves, adding weight to fears that a drop in…

About InSight Crime

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime Tackles Illegal Fishing

15 OCT 2021

In October, InSight Crime and American University’s Center for Latin American and Latino Studies (CLALS) began a year-long project on illegal, unreported, unregulated (IUU) fishing in…

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime Featured in Handbook for Reporting on Organized Crime

8 OCT 2021

In late September, the Global Investigative Journalism Network (GIJN) published an excerpt of its forthcoming guide on reporting organized crime in Indonesia.

THE ORGANIZATION

Probing Organized Crime in Haiti

1 OCT 2021

InSight Crime has made it a priority to investigate organized crime in Haiti, where an impotent state is reeling after the July assassination of President Jovenel Moïse, coupled with an…

THE ORGANIZATION

Emergency First Aid in Hostile Environments

24 SEP 2021

At InSight Crime's annual treat, we ramped up hostile environment and emergency first aid training for our 40-member staff, many of whom conduct on-the-ground investigations in dangerous corners of the region.

THE ORGANIZATION

Series on Environmental Crime in the Amazon Generates Headlines

17 SEP 2021

InSight Crime and the Igarapé Institute have been delighted at the response to our joint investigation into environmental crimes in the Colombian Amazon. Coverage of our chapters dedicated to illegal mining…