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As President Trump pressures Mexico to do more to stop the flow of migrants heading to the U.S., some of his threats, including sealing the U.S.-Mexico border, are affecting local business there. Meanwhile, the Mexican government is meeting some of the president's demands. Michel Marizco, senior editor for public radio station KJZZ’s Fronteras desk joins Hari Sreenivasan from Tucson, Arizona with more.
The president spent part of yesterday at theU.S. Mexico border pointing out a rebuilt section of wall completed last fall and claiming it as part of the wall he's been demanding be built since his 2016 campaign. Trump also announced that the U.S. can't accept any asylum seekers or undocumented immigrants at the southern border because, quote: "Our country is full." For more on the president's visit and what's next. Michel Marizco senior editor for public radio station KJZZ's Fronteras desk joins us now via Skype from Tucson, Arizona.
Thanks for being with us.
You know right now we have the president kind of backing off of the 'let's seal the border completely' threat. But what happens each time the president says something like this to the local businesses the residents that actually live along the border?
Two things happen. First there are partial shutdowns. Let's start there. Those started at about the same time that he initiated the first threat about a week and a half ago. What's been happening is they have been partially closed down certain shipping lanes between the U.S. Mexico Mesa and Latino Passel warmness and inhuman. Those are already adding hours of wait time for example in El Paso upwards of nine 10 hours of shipping just waiting in Mexico to process the same time. This is also really concerning investors. You know the border is trying to draw investment trying to draw new flows of cash to these areas for building Makela. As for technology this is scaring people away. And this is a huge tremendous concern for people for example here in Ghana. What about execution of that.
What about execution of these orders? Who's on the front lines? I mean the Border Patrol doesn't have an increased number of staff to go along with this. I'm imagining they're just, what, working longer hours?
Well what they what they did was they diverted Customs and Border Protection officers Customs inspectors away from these lines and then put them to work with U.S. Border Patrol agents are the agents who patrol between ports of entry to help regulate and administer to the needs of asylum seekers. But then went into that happening as we're already have a shortage of CBP officers along the entire border. And so now we have even less officers that can be dedicated to the task of continuing the flow of goods people services across the border.
What about the Mexican government's response to all this?
So Mexican President Andrés Manuel Lopez Obrador has has played a very careful role here and in the first case. He's been somewhat dismissive he said now he didn't believe President Trump would actually shut down the border. He was right about that. But he is also been boxing himself into a corner where even now he continues to give small concessions. For example there is at least a suggestion that Mexico has been increasing deportations of Central Americans on behalf of the U.S. Every time that they give a little bit of acquiescence there the criticism has been coming in that the U.S. just demands even more from Mexico.
KJZZ and the Fronteras Desk with Michel Marizco joining us via Skype today from Tucson. Thanks so much.
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