President Donald Trump of the United States of America announced Friday night that a deal was in place that would avert threatened tariffs on Mexican imports in exchange for Mexico taking “strong measures” to curb the influx of Central American migrants at the U.S. southern border.
“I am pleased to inform you that The United States of America has reached a signed agreement with Mexico,” Trump wrote on Twitter. “The Tariffs scheduled to be implemented by the U.S. on Monday, against Mexico, are hereby indefinitely suspended. Mexico, in turn, has agreed to take strong measures to stem the tide of Migration through Mexico, and to our Southern Border.”
Trump said the State Department would release additional details about the deal.
Martha Barcena, Mexican ambassador to Washington, tweeted late Friday that the two countries reached an agreement “to address the humanitarian crisis stemming from the recent migratory flows that have affected our two countries.” She said that Mexico will strengthen immigration enforcement and “provide job, education and health opportunities for people who wait in Mexican territory for the end of their asylum process in the U.S.”
The announcement came after fevered negotiations with just two days left before Trump’s declared deadline to produce a deal; he had threatened tariffs beginning Monday.
Flying back to Washington from a week-long visit to Europe, Trump wrote in a tweet aboard Air Force One that there was a “good chance” of a deal that would include Mexico buying more agricultural products from the United States — a signal that his threats of tariffs could hinge on more than just immigration.
But the president also warned that “if we are unable to make the deal, Mexico will begin paying Tariffs at the 5% level on Monday!” Trump has said the tariffs would rise each month until they reached 25 percent if Mexico did not take significant steps to reduce the record number of unauthorized crossings by Central American families.
Mexico had responded to Trump’s threats by announcing new actions to apprehend more Central American migrants traveling across its borders. And U.S. negotiators said this week that they had reached the outlines of a deal that would dramatically increase Mexico’s immigration enforcement efforts and give the United States far more latitude to deport asylum seekers from Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador.
“We’re doing well,” Trump told reporters Friday in response to shouted questions on the South Lawn after he arrived back at the White House on Marine One.