President Donald Trump on Tuesday waved around a document which contained a “secret” deal with Mexico, which became not so secret after photos from the press allowed reporters to read parts of the classified agreement. The details gleaned from Trump’s emphatic paper-waving were not as groundbreaking as many had hoped, however, since Mexico had already outlined much of the so-called “secret” plan.

For the past week, the president had been threatening Mexico with tariffs if it didn’t crack down on immigration into the United States, a subject which Trump had made central to his presidency ever since his 2016 campaign. Luckily, the two nations were able to stave off the proposed trade barriers through diplomatic means. After a series of hurried negotiations between the U.S. and its southern neighbor, Mexico agreed to help stem the influx of Central American immigrants, deploying 6,000 members of its newly formed national guard along the border with Guatemala. In addition to those measures, Mexico’s Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard also agreed to a 45-day timeline to show that these new enforcement efforts were having a legitimate effect on the inflow of migrants into the United States.

If there are no signs of a significant change after those 45 days, then Mexico will consider a longstanding American-demand that it allow migrants to apply for asylum in Mexico, instead of the United States. The Spanish speaking nation has long refused this request, fearing that their country will become flooded with immigrants from the surrounding South and Central American countries. “Safe third country could be applied if we fail, and we accept what they say,” stated Ebrard on Tuesday.


The information that reporters were able to make out in Trump’s document supported the Mexican foreign minister’s comments. Some of the phrases deciphered were “45 days,” “a regional approach to burden-sharing in relation to the processing of refugee status claims to migrants,” and a discussion of Mexico’s commitment to immediately reexamine its immigration and asylum laws in order to best cooperate with the agreement.

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