Trump Boycotts U.N. Migration Talks

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President Donald Trump has decided to boycott a global conference on migration scheduled to begin Monday in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, sending a blunt signal that the United States is no longer interested in forging a concerted response to the world’s burgeoning migration crises.

Trump made the decision on Friday — a day dominated by Senate negotiations on a landmark tax bill — and just days before the Mexican government is scheduled Monday to host a three-day meeting to take stock of negotiations on a pact to ensure a more humane approach to the more than 60 million people who have been forcibly displaced as a result of conflict, poverty or climate change. On Saturday, the U.S. mission to the United Nations informed Secretary General Antonio Guterres that it was “ending its participation in the Global Compact on Migration.”

The U.S. president’s decision to pull out of the negotiations highlighted the enduring influence of Stephen Miller, the 32-year-old senior White House policy advisor who has championed the Trump administration’s effort to sharply restrict immigration to the United States. In recent weeks, Miller led effofts to pull out of the migration talks.

The administration’s top national security advisers met early last week to determine whether the United States would participate in the talks.

White House chief of staff John Kelly, who previously led the Department of Homeland Security’s crackdown on illegal immigrants, and Attorney General Jeff Sessions strongly backed a pullout, according to diplomatic sources familiar with the deliberations. The State Department initially opposed the withdrawal, but its policy planning chief, Brian Hook, who represented Secretary of State Rex Tillerson at the principals’ meeting, reversed course and recommended ditching the negotiations.

The meeting ended in deadlock, with Nikki Haley, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, expressing the lone dissent. Haley had argued that the United States would have a better shot at influencing the outcome of the negotiations if it participated in the process.

She was ultimately overruled by the president, according to diplomatic sources.

Read the entire article here:http://foreignpolicy.com/2017/12/02/trump-boycotts-u-n-migration-talks/