Vice President Kamala Harris was greeted Monday by protesters in Guatemala who said “Trump won” and “go home” when the country’s president blamed President Biden for this year’s migrant crisis.
The rally was visible to Harris ‘motorcade when they arrived the day after meeting Guatemalan President Alejandro Giammattei after he blamed the US for luring voters north.
“Kamala, Trump has won,” read a large sign near the presidential palace of the Central American country.
“Kamala, mind your own business,” said a pool report on another sign.
Pictures posted on Twitter show other signs, including one saying “Kamala, Go Home” to President Biden’s migration tsar.
Another large sign posted by activists shows a manipulated photo of a pregnant Harris.
The poster said: “Guatemala is pro-life #momalahelpme.” Harris has no biological children.
Another sign apparently put up by activists on a tall billboard along the road says: “Kamala Stop Funding Criminals #FueraDeGuatemala”.
It is unclear how many participants were involved in the protest.
Giammattei said in a CBS News interview on Sunday that the Biden government was responsible for sparking the migration crisis.
The Guatemalan President said he and Harris are “not on the same side” on migration.
“We asked the United States government to send a clearer message to prevent more people from leaving the country,” said Giammattei.
“The message has also changed: ‘We’re going to reunite families, we’re going to reunite children,'” he said. “The very next day the coyotes were here organizing groups of children to take them to the United States.”
After a full day of meetings, Harris will leave Guatemala on Monday evening for Mexico, where she will meet with President Andrés Manuel López Obrador on Tuesday.
Former President Donald Trump made curbing illegal immigration and stopping caravans of asylum seekers from Central America the main themes of his four-year term. At some point he stopped providing foreign aid to regional governments.
Critics attribute the record surge in illegal immigration to Biden’s policies, including his decision to end Trump’s “Remain in Mexico” policy, which required most Central American asylum seekers to remain in Mexico while US courts made their allegations of persecution checked.
Biden also finished building Trump’s border wall between the US and Mexico and called on Congress to pass laws that would pave the way for citizenship for most illegal immigrants. Republicans said the legislation and changes to Biden’s policy created new “pull” factors for illegal immigration – counteracting Harris’s emphasis on “root causes” in Central America.
The number of arrests at the U.S.-Mexico border rose to a 21-year monthly high of more than 178,000 in April, the last month for which statistics are available. Many families and unaccompanied children come from the “Northern Triangle” of Central America, which includes Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador.