U.S. National Security Council’s Senior Director for Western Hemisphere Affairs visits Guatemala

Guatemala City — Special Assistant to the President and Senior Director for Western Hemisphere Affairs at the National Security Council (NSC) Mauricio Claver-Carone visited Guatemala for a series of meetings with Guatemalan Government officials, and representatives of the private sector and civil society to discuss the recently signed Asylum Cooperation Agreement (ACA) between the U.S. and Guatemalan Governments.

Mr. Claver-Carone met with President of the Republic of Guatemala Jimmy Morales, Foreign Minister Sandra Jovel, Minister of Government Enrique Degenhart, Minister of Economy Acisclo Valladares, Minister of Labor Gabriel Aguilera, and Minister of Agriculture Mario Mendez during which he expressed appreciation for the excellent operational relationship that the United States enjoys with the Government of Guatemala as exemplified by the recently signed Agreement. Mr. Claver-Carone reiterated the importance for the Guatemalan Government to continue working hand-in-hand with the United States to ensure expeditious and successful implementation of this agreement. Officials discussed how we further expand cooperation to improve capacity, curb out-migration, and provide economic benefits to Guatemala.

In discussions with PRONACOM Commissioner Victor Asturias and representatives of Guatemala’s major private sector organizations, Mr. Claver-Carone shared the White House message that implementation of the ACA will be critical to stem the flow of irregular migration from Central America and enforce critical protection measures for vulnerable populations. By adhering to the tenets of this agreement, the Guatemalan Government will create a model for its neighbor-countries to find ways to similarly take steps to vulnerable populations close to home and ensure that criminal groups or smugglers can no longer victimize innocent people. By implementing this agreement, Guatemala will pave the way to work with like-minded partners in the region to increase security and stem illegal migration. The ACA will improve humanitarian conditions on the ground and could serve as a model of cooperation and assistance for the entire region.