Secretary of State Rex Tillerson continued talks with Mexican officials on Thursday ahead of a planned meeting with President Enrique Peña Nieto — a trek that President Donald Trump himself acknowledged was “going to be a tough trip.”
Tillerson, the new head of the State Department, and administration officials are working to smooth over tensions sparked by brash rhetoric, plans to build a border wall, and most recently the Department of Homeland Security’s new immigration guidelines. The plans unveiled Tuesday would consider almost all undocumented immigrants subject to deportation, and includes sending those who enter the U.S. illegally via the southern border back to Mexico, even if they aren’t from there.
On Thursday, Trump administration officials sought to assuage concerns.
“Let me be clear, there will be no mass deportations, everything we do in DHS will be done legally,” DHS Chief John Kelly said during a press conference following meetings with Mexican officials. “The focus of deportation will be on the criminal element, all of this will be done in close coordination with Mexico.”
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