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Home >> World
UPDATED: 11:35, December 25, 2005
Guatemala protests against U.S. anti-immigration initative
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The Guatemalan government lodged a protest to the United States against its planned anti-immigration bill and agreed with Mexico to fight it together, the Guatemalan Foreign Ministry said on Saturday.

Under the bill, a fencing of 1,200 km will be built along the 3,200 km border between the United States and Mexico. Military technologies will also be used to prevent undocumented immigration.

Illegal immigrants and those who help them, including their family members, will be taken as criminals, the bill said.

The draft has been passed by the U.S. House of Representatives and is being considered by the Senate.

Guatemalan Foreign Minister Jorge Briz told reporters that the initiative is "discriminatory" and potentially harmful to Guatemalans who travel to the United States without documents.

The Guatemalan government would also present similar complaints to leaders of the two U.S. parties, Briz said.

The official added that he would go to Mexico next week to meet with his Mexican counterpart, Luis Ernesto Derbez, coordinate a campaign against the bill.

About 1.3 million Guatemalans are living in the United States, and 90 percent of them have no legal documents.

Source: Xinhua

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