President Donald Trump said at a cabinet meeting Monday that Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto told him that Mexico is experiencing less immigration because immigrants don’t think they can get safely into the U.S.
The comments from the president came as he was complimenting his new chief of staff John Kelly, who used to head the Department of Homeland Security.
“We respect him. Admire what’s he done. And at Homeland, what he has done is nothing short of miraculous. As you know, the border was a tremendous problem,” Trump said at the beginning of the cabinet meeting. “Even the president of Mexico called me and said [at] their southern border very few people are coming because they know they’re not going to get through our border.”
Mexico had a migration crisis in 2016 as illegal immigrants from Africa, Haiti, and Central American nations poured into the country. In the first seven months of 2016, Mexican authorities detained more African immigrants than they had in the four years prior combined. These migrants would frequently settle in Tijuana with hopes of getting asylum in the U.S. (RELATED: Texas AG Says Trump Has Done More To Stop Illegal Immigration Than Any Other In World History)
The Trump administration has made it harder to gain asylum in the U.S. and illegal border crossings have also plummeted to record lows. The Associated Press recently reported that families fleeing Central America are now settling in Mexico.