President Enrique Peña Nieto on Tuesday February 7 welcomed a group of Mexicans who had been deported from the U.S. back home amidst tough talk from President Donald Trump on a border wall.
Peña Nieto met the group of 135 citizens at Mexico City’s International airport where he pledged his solidarity and government support in helping them get re-established in Mexico.
The deported citizens have come back home under Mexico’s PRIM program, which brings Mexicans forced to leave the United States back home. Upon their arrival, they will receive a health check up as well as transportation to help them return to rural communities.
Pea Nieto reassured the deported Mexicans that they are not alone in their home country.
“You are not alone. Let the government assist you in this process of returning to your country. Some of you have been abroad for many years, others less, but don’t feel abandoned. The doors are always open especially within the government and at the Interior Ministry so as to direct federal government assistance which can help you,” he said.
The meeting comes amidst vows from President Donald Trump to build a border wall along the international border between the neighbouring countries. The American leader has vowed to make Mexico pay for construction costs, which Los Pinos has refused, and vowed to deport some three million undocumented migrants from the country.
Pedro Vazquez was deported to Mexico after spending 16 years in the United States. He leaves behind a wife and four children who have U.S. citizenship.
“No, it’s scary when you have a situation like mine and now with the administration for the new president (Trump), yes, because anyone who commits whatever crime, even if they have done time for a previous crime, those who are illegal they (authorities) are looking for them,” he said.
Another deported migrant, Ramon Barajas, told media he will return to the United States to reunite with his wife.
“I will go back. My wife is there. I am the one who works, I’m the bread winner,” said Barajas.
According to Pew, more than 16 million Mexican migrants have migrated to the United States in the last 50 years.
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