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Kamala Harris announces $1.9 billion more for Central America

Vice President Kamala Harris emerged from her long period of silence on the border crisis on Tuesday to announce that the private sector would inject nearly $2 billion more into Central America – even as thousands of migrants from the region head towards the US-Mexico border.

The White House presented the $1.9 billion investment plan as the latest attempt to tackle what it calls the “root causes” of mass economic migration to the United States.

Initiatives include a $700 million expansion of cellular networks in Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador by Miami-based Millicom; a $270 million commitment from Visa to promote digital payments; and a $110 million investment from auto parts supplier Yazaki to hire more than 14,000 employees in Guatemala and El Salvador by the end of 2026.

However, whatever the long-term effect of the investment plan, it should not affect the caravan currently crossing Mexico.

Kamala Harris on Tuesday broke her silence on immigration and Central America.
AFP via Getty Images

On Monday, at least 6,000 people set out from Tapachula, Mexico, marching north in hopes of crossing into the United States.

Estimates on the official size of the caravan vary. Organizer Luis Villigran told Fox News on Monday the caravan stretched more than 32 miles and estimated 9,500 people attended.

While the Guardian reported last week that around 11,000 people were part of the caravan and suggested the number could be as high as 15,000, the Mexican government has neither provided an official estimate of the size of the caravan nor made a public comment about it.

Kamala Harris announces $1.9 billion more for Central America
Migrants walk in a caravan towards the US border on June 7.

Typically, large caravans traveling in the United States are made up of a few thousand people at most.

Harris was named President Biden’s “border czar” in March 2021, but has taken little public action on the matter and has only visited countries in the region twice.

In December, Harris announced an initial $1.2 billion private-sector investment in Central America – calling on Pepsi, Cargill, Mastercard and other major US corporations to help create jobs in the region.

Kamala Harris announces $1.9 billion more for Central America
Reports indicate that the caravans consist of at least a few thousand people each.

Harris – as well as the Biden administration as a whole – have been repeatedly criticized for not doing enough to stop mass migration as the number of attempted border crossings soars.

Republicans reiterated their criticism on Monday with news of the latest caravan approaching the United States.

“President Biden’s open border agenda encourages anarchy,” said the House GOP tweeted from its official account on Monday. “A country without secure borders is not a country.”

Kamala Harris announces $1.9 billion more for Central America
Migrants participating in a caravan stop to rest in the village of Alvaro Obregon, Mexico.
AFP via Getty Images

In April alone, border officials reported a new high of 234,088 encounters on the southern border, with just under 97,000 people summarily deported under Title 42 and more than 110,000 released in the United States.

“A true Border Czar must be a leader who recognizes that border security is national security, provides CBP with the resources it has been deprived of, takes action to protect American communities from deadly narcotics, and does not allow border security policy decisions are made guided by open border activists,” Mark Morgan, former head of the U.S. Border Patrol during the Obama administration and head of Customs and Customs, told The Post. of US border protection under former President Donald Trump.

Even fellow Democrats lambasted the Veep’s seemingly limited efforts.

Kamala Harris announces $1.9 billion more for Central America
Members of the National Guard watch over migrants standing on the roof of the entrance to the Siglo XXI migrant detention center on June 6.

“I say this to him very respectfully: I’ve moved on,” Texas Rep. Henry Cuellar told The New York Times in December. “She’s been tasked with this work, it doesn’t seem like she’s very interested in it, so we’ll move on to other people who are working on this issue.”

New York Post

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