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United States and Guatemala sign Asylum Cooperative Agreement

  1. Original Date Announced

    July 26, 2019

    Under a DHS agreement with the government of Guatemala, the US may deport asylum seekers to Guatemala if they pass through Guatemala en route to the U.S. and fail to request protection there. The agreement does not apply to Guatemalan nationals. Guatemala agrees not to remove asylum seekers deported from the U.S. without consideration of the merits of their protection requests. The agreement was signed by Acting Secretary McAleenan.

    [ID #84]

    Agreement Between the Government of the U.S. and The Government of Guatemala On Cooperation Regarding the Examination of Protection Claims (English) Acuerdo Entre El Gobeierno De Los E.E.U.U. y el Gobierno de la República de Guatemala Relativo a la Cooperación Respecto al Examen de Solicitudes de Protección (Spanish)
  2. Effective Date

    July 21, 2019
  4. Biden Administration Action: Revoked/Replaced

    February 6, 2021

    Suspending and Terminating the Asylum Cooperative Agreements with El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras

    This Biden administration policy revokes in its entirety the Trump-era policy identified in this entry.

    On Feb. 6, 2021, the State Department announced that the U.S. had suspended and initiated the process to terminate the asylum cooperative agreements with Guatemala, Honduras, and El Salvador. According to the press release, the termination of these agreements will be effective only after the notice period stipulated in each of the agreements, but the suspension is effective immediately.

    View Document

Current Status

Not in effect
February 6, 2021
Acted on by Biden Administration

Original Trump Policy Status

Trump Administration Action: Agency Directive
Agencies Affected: DOJ CBP USCIS

Pre Trump-Era Policies

  • December 29, 2004

    The United States and Canada signed a Safe Third Country Agreement on December 5, 2002, based on mutual acknowledgement of the international legal obligations of the Parties under the principle of non-refoulement set forth in the Convention and Protocol and recognition that both countries offer generous systems of refugee protection, recalling both countries’ traditions of assistance to refugees and displaced persons abroad.

    Canada-U.S. Safe Third Country Agreement
  • December 23, 2008

    Section 208(2)(A) established an exception to asylum and allowed return to a "safe third country" only if: "the alien's life or freedom would not be threatened" and "the alien would have a full and fair procedure for determining a claim to asylum or equivalant temporary protection."

    8 U.S. Code § 1158


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