Guatemala

Guatemala's president-elect: Migrant deal with U.S. won't work

President-elect Alejandro Giammattei speaks during a interview with AFP in Guatemala City on August 12, 2019.
Guatemala's President-elect Alejandro Giammattei during an interview in Guatemala City on Monday. Photo: Johan Ordonez/AFP/Getty Images

The current Guatemalan government's "safe third country" asylum agreement with the Trump administration won't work because Guatemala doesn't have the resources, President-elect Alejandro Giammattei told AP in an interview published Wednesday.

"In order to be a safe country, one has to be certified as such by an international body, and I do not think Guatemala fulfills the requirements to be a third safe country. That definition doesn’t fit us."
— Guatemala's President-elect Alejandro Giammattei to AP
Expert Voices

Guatemalan election could upend Trump’s migration deal

Alejandro Giammettei surrounded by journalists
President-elect Alejandro Giammattei speaking to press in Guatemala City. Photo: Fabricio Alonzo/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

The surprise victory of Alejandro Giammattei in Guatemala's runoff presidential election on Sunday could throw a central plank of Trump’s migration strategy into doubt.

The big picture: Giammattei campaigned on improving security, boosting economic growth, promoting socially conservative values and fighting corruption, though he opposes the renewal of a UN–backed anti-corruption commission. He said he will seek to amend the immigration deal that outgoing President Jimmy Morales signed with President Trump, which he has called “not right for the country.”