U.S. cutting off aids to three Central American countries

Source: Xinhua| 2019-03-31 11:03:04|Editor: Xiaoxia
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WASHINGTON, March 30 (Xinhua) -- The United States is cutting off aids to three Central American countries, as President Donald Trump kept grumbling at their failure to stop illegal migration up north to his country, said the State Department on Saturday.

The U.S. State Department is "carrying out the President's direction and ending FY (fiscal year) 2017 and FY 2018 foreign assistance programs for the Northern Triangle," otherwise known as El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras, it said in a statement.

"We will be engaging Congress as part of this process," the statement added.

The announcement came days after Trump complained in a tweet that the Central American countries did "nothing" on illegal immigration after taking U.S. aids.

"Mexico is doing NOTHING to help stop the flow of illegal immigrants to our Country. They are all talk and no action," Trump said in a tweet on Thursday. "Likewise, Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador have taken our money for years, and do Nothing."

The president's remarks stood in contrast with those of Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, who has thanked the three countries for their efforts to help the United States secure the border.

Illegal immigrants trying to enter the United States through the Mexican border remain a major concern for the U.S. government. The United States is committing billions of dollars through public and private investment toward the Northern Triangle countries in an effort to stop the flow of migrants.

In October, Trump threatened to cut off or reduce U.S. aid to Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador as the three countries failed to stop people from the exodus.

At least 1,200 Central American migrants, mainly from the three countries, left the Mexican city of Tapachula in Chiapas in a caravan last weekend and headed to the U.S. border, according to local authorities.

A fiscal year in the United States begins on Oct. 1 and ends on Sept. 30 in the following year.