Guatemala

Trump could begin deporting asylum-seekers to Honduras by 2020

A car driving along a dirt road by a border fence on the southwest border.
A section of the southwest border. Photo: Daniel Woolfolk/AFP via Getty Images

The Trump administration could begin sending some Central American immigrants seeking asylum in the U.S. to Honduras by January 2020, although the details of the agreement are still being worked out, BuzzFeed News' Hamed Aleaziz reports.

Why it matters: The asylum agreements with Central American nations signed since the summer by former acting Homeland Security Secretary Kevin McAleenan are beginning to take effect. They could force people fleeing their homes to seek asylum in neighboring nations where there are often weak asylum systems, severe poverty and high crime rates.

U.S. sends first Honduran asylum seeker sent to Guatemala

The border.
Dozens of people seen waiting to enter the U.S. on the Northern side of the International Bridge over the Rio Grande, in Matamoros, Tamaulipas state, Mexico. Photo: LEXIE HARRISON-CRIPPS/AFP via Getty Images

The first Honduran migrant was sent to Guatemala on Thursday to pursue his asylum case, the AP reports, kicking off a "landmark" Trump administration policy.

Flashback: Guatemala signed a "safe third country" agreement in July, agreeing to take in more Central American asylum seekers in an effort to slow migration in the U.S. The policy mostly impacts immigrants from Honduras and El Salvador whose routes to the U.S. go through Guatemala. Thousands of Guatemalans left the country last year to seek asylum in the U.S., Al Jazeera notes.