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Trump’s agreements in Central America could dismantle the asylum system as we know it

The Trump administration has reached agreements with Honduras, El Salvador, and Guatemala that would require migrants on their way to the US to seek protections in those countries first, effectively cutting off their access to the American asylum system before they even reach the southern border.

The agreements and the administration’s reported plan to implement them would realize President Donald Trump’s goal of driving down the number of migrants seeking refuge at the US southern border by sending them back to the countries they came from and passed through.

Experts warn that the plan would have deadly consequences for the migrants who would be sent back.

“We’re talking about forcing people to remain in these countries where the government is unable to protect them, locking them there and throwing away the key,” said Ursela Ojeda, a migrant rights and justice policy adviser at the Women’s Refugee Commission.