Steven Nelson reports for Washington Examiner that at an event on May 23, 2018 in New York, President Trump denounced the criminal gang MS-13 and announced that the U.S. will begin to deduct foreign aid from countries whose residents illegally enter the United States:
“Many of these countries we give tremendous amounts of aid to. Tens of millions of dollars. And we’re working on a plan to deduct a lot of the aid. We’re going to work out something where every time someone comes in from a certain country, we’re going to deduct a rather large amount of money from what we give them in aid, if we give them aid at all. We may just not give them aid at all.”
After another panelist mentioned foreign countries refusing to accept deportees, President Trump said:
“They’ll let you think they’re trying to stop this. They are not trying to stop it. I think they encourage people… They don’t want the people that we’re getting. Despite all of the reports I hear, I don’t believe they’re helping us one bit. and it may be that’s the way life is. We know where these people are coming from. We’re looking at our whole aid structure and it’s going to be changed very radically. It’s already started.”
MS-13 was founded in Los Angeles in the 1980s among refugees from El Salvador, where a U.S.-backed government fought communist rebels, with human rights violations on both sides. Many MS-13 members in the U.S. had illegally entered the U.S.
Trump did not specify which countries would be targeted.
According to USAID:
- U.S. foreign aid to El Salvador fluctuates from year to year. In 2015, it was a record $332 million; in 2016, it was $75 million.
- Mexico, the top home country of illegal immigrants in the U.S., received $87 million in foreign aid in 2016.