US Vice President Kamala Harris said Wednesday she will visit Mexico and Guatemala as part of her mission to address the “root causes” of an influx in migrants at the southern border.
Speaking with reporters in Washington, Harris did not say if she planned to visit the border herself, where she said President Joe Biden has asked homeland security secretary Alejandro Mayorkas to tackle the migrant surge.
“We must address the symptoms and that is what is happening with the team of folks working on the border, led by Ali Mayorkas,” she told reporters.
Her task is slightly different, she said. “Our goal is to deal with the root causes, and I’m happy, looking forward to be travelling for what will be, hopefully, my first trip to the Northern Triangle, stopping first in Mexico and then Guatemala sometime soon,” she said, without giving dates.
In March, the number of undocumented migrants apprehended at the southern border of the United States rose 71 percent over the previous month, totaling 172,331 people.
One aspect of the growing challenge facing the Biden administration is the increase in the arrival of unaccompanied minors, who are admitted to US territory, and who the government has to house while waiting to reunite them with family members.