In this sept. 18, 2019, photo, President Donald Trump talks with reporters as he tours a section of the southern border wall, in Otay Mesa, Calif., as acting Homeland Secretary Kevin McAleenan listens. According to a senior administration official, the U.S. will sign an asylum agreement with the government of El Salvador. The official said the agreement will be signed Friday by McAleenan. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

APNewsBreak: Source says US, El Salvador to sign asylum deal

September 20, 2019 - 8:33 am

NEW YORK (AP) — A senior Trump administration official says the U.S. is planning to sign an agreement to make one of Central America's most violent countries, El Salvador, a haven for migrants seeking asylum.

The official said acting Homeland Security Secretary Kevin McAleenan will sign a "cooperative asylum agreement" with El Salvador on Friday. The official wasn't authorized to speak publicly and spoke to The Associated Press on the condition of anonymity.

The agreement could lead to migrants from third countries obtaining refuge in El Salvador, even though many Salvadorans are fleeing their nation and seeking asylum in the U.S. It's the latest effort by the Trump administration to force asylum-seekers in Central America to seek refuge outside the United States.

A Salvadoran delegation has been in the United States meeting with officials.