© Reuters. Migrants seeking asylum in the United States, gather at the Paso Del Norte International Bridge between Mexico and the United States, after the lifting of COVID-19-era Title 42 restrictions that prevented migrants from the border to seek asylum since 2020, I
MEXICO CITY (Reuters) – The Mexican government on Saturday criticized a tough new immigration law in Florida, led by Republican Governor and U.S. presidential candidate Ron DeSantis, and the country has pledged to help protect Mexicans undocumented in this state.
DeSantis is seeking the Republican nomination for president in 2024, and his new Florida law, which went into effect Saturday, is seen as a preview of the kind of hard-line policies he would seek when it comes to immigration enforcement. .
Last month, Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador urged Latin American voters to reject DeSantis, accusing the politician of trying to win votes at the expense of migrants.
According to DeSantis’ website, the new law includes allocating funds to move migrants without legal status out of state; restrict access to identity cards; and requiring more companies to use an electronic system to validate a person’s eligibility to work.
Mexico’s foreign ministry said in a statement that the provisions could incite discrimination and racial profiling, and lead to hostile environments, intimidation and hate crimes.
“Criminalization is not the way to solve the phenomenon of undocumented migration,” the ministry said, describing the new measures as motivated by xenophobia and white nationalism.
He added that Mexico respects U.S. legislative processes, but sees Florida’s law as running counter to joint U.S.-Mexico efforts to treat migrants with respect.
Mexican consulates in the United States will work to inform migrants of their rights and partner with civil society groups to identify potential cases of abuse, the ministry said.