The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) made the announcement on Wednesday that the administration of President Joe Biden will allow certain asylum-seekers from Venezuela to enter the country lawfully if they have a financial sponsor based in the United States. This move is being made in an effort to discourage illegal crossings along the southern border.
According to top U.S. government sources who spoke with media, the United States has just reached an arrangement with the government of Mexico that might result in the expedited deportation of Venezuelan migrants who unlawfully cross the border between the United States and Mexico. In the past, the authorities in Mexico did not usually comply with requests to deport Venezuelan citizens.
Parole is a form of humanitarian immigration authority that enables beneficiaries to apply for work permits. Similar to how the United States welcomed Ukrainians into the country after the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the United States will grant parole to eligible Venezuelan migrants who pass background checks if they are in need of assistance. However, parole does not open the door to a permanent legal status for the offender.
In addition to the numerical limit, the sponsorship programme for Venezuelans includes several eligibility restrictions. These restrictions include a ban on migrants who cross the United States-Mexico border unlawfully after the announcement made on Wednesday, as well as those who have been deported from the United States in the previous five years.
According to officials from the United States, this process is contingent on the Mexican government upholding its commitment to accept the return of migrants from Venezuela who enter the United States illegally. Venezuelans who enter Mexico or Panama after Wednesday will be disqualified from the sponsorship process.
According to a senior U.S. official, the eligibility rules are intended to dissuade Venezuelans from making the dangerous journey across multiple countries in Central America and Mexico to reach the United States. Tens of thousands of Venezuelan migrants have already made this journey over the course of the past year in order to reach the United States.
According to statistics provided by the government of Panama, more than 150,000 migrants, 107,000 of whom originated in Venezuela, have traversed Panama’s infamous Darién Gap this year. The Darién Gap is a roadless jungle that more than 150,000 migrants, 107,000 of whom originated in Venezuela, have traversed.
The announcement made on Wednesday could mark a seismic shift in the United States’ border policy regarding Venezuelan migrants. Venezuelan migrants have travelled to the United States-Mexico border in record numbers over the past year in response to the economic collapse and political unrest in their home country.
According to statistics provided by the government, U.S. border patrol agents have processed more than 150,000 Venezuelan migrants since October of 2021. Because the United States has generally not been able to deport Venezuelan migrants to Mexico or Venezuela, where the repressive government in Caracas refuses to accept deportations from the United States, the vast majority of Venezuelan migrants have been released and allowed to pursue claims for asylum up until this point.
However, senior U.S. officials have stated that migrants who circumvent the new sponsorship process and attempt to enter the country illegally will be subject to expulsion to Mexico in accordance with Title 42. Title 42 is a public health order that was implemented during the Trump administration and prevents migrants from seeking asylum. A federal court injunction has caused the policy that was in effect during the epidemic to stay in effect.
The Mexican foreign ministry issued a statement confirming that an agreement had been reached with the administration of President Joe Biden. The statement also said that Mexico would maintain “its unilateral policy of accepting migrants under Title 42 for humanitarian grounds.”
Those who are interested in becoming a sponsor for Venezuelan individuals seeking asylum in the United States are required to complete an online application with the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). It will be necessary for potential sponsors to submit to background checks and provide evidence that they are authorised to be in the United States and that they have the financial wherewithal to sponsor Venezuelan migrants.
When asked how Venezuelan migrants who do not have family or friends in the United States will find sponsors, a senior official in the United States said that the Biden administration will work with the private sector to identify would-be sponsors. The official noted that the goal is to replicate the success of the sponsorship policy for Ukrainians, which is known as Uniting for Ukraine.
According to numbers provided by the DHS, the Uniting for Ukraine programme has allowed 67,000 Ukrainians who have sponsors in the United States to be granted humanitarian parole and enter the country. Over 146,000 people living in the United States have submitted sponsorship petitions to USCIS in the span of less than half a year.
Officials from the United States have said that they would do an analysis of the Venezuelan sponsorship scheme to decide whether or not to continue it. People who are aware with the situation have said that one version of the programme that was examined internally included migrants from other countries, including as Cuba and Nicaragua, both of which have seen record numbers of their nationals travel to the United States.