DHS deportation shift fuels Mexico tensions ahead of Tillerson trip

The memos also lay out some details on President Donald Trump's plan to build a wall along the Mexican border, indicating that the U.S.is still looking at ways to get Mexico to pay for the structure.

President Trump sent two members of his Cabinet south of the border on Wednesday, to explain his new crackdown on illegal immigration.

At the White House, press secretary Sean Spicer said the U.S. He called the relationship "phenomenal".

Since Trump's grip on power after the 2016 presidential vote, ties between U.S. and Mexico have been centered on the new president's proposal to build a wall on the southern border and force Mexico to pay for it.

"The Trump administration is intent on inflicting cruelty on millions of immigrant families across the country", she said in a statement.

Trump repeatedly targeted Mexico during his presidential campaign, saying the country was sending rapists and drug dealers across the border and insisting that it was taking advantage of the US through the North American Free Trade Agreement.

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Kelly arrived in the Mexican capital from Guatemala on a visit meant to deter Guatemalans from trying to enter the US illegally.

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson boards his aircraft prior to departing for Mexico from Joint Base Andrews, Maryland, Feb. 22, 2017.

Under current regulations, immediate removal can be applied only to people who've been caught within 100 miles of the border and who have been in the United States 14 days or less.

"The San Diego Police Department does not check the immigration status of victims and witnesses of crimes to encourage all people to come forward, confident in the knowledge their report will be investigated thoroughly and professionally", Zimmerman said. The effort, called the 287 (g) program, was scaled back during the Obama administration. That includes about 1 million undocumented immigrants in Los Angeles County, 270,000 in Orange County, 160,000 in Riverside County, and 140,000 in San Bernardino County, according to estimates from the Migration Policy Institute.

Watch the press conference live below. President Donald Trump made immigration and border control a key part of his campaign.

But in a hearing with Mexican senators, Mexico's new ambassador to the United States, Geronimo Gutierrez, said, "Obviously, they are a cause for concern for the foreign relations department, for the Mexican government, and for all Mexicans". "We will not accept that because we have no reason to; it is not in the interest of the Mexico".

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"I think there's an unbelievable and robust dialogue between the two nations", Spicer said.

"While the visit will go some way to smoothing bilateral discussions, there is a hard-earned trust that has been broken, and that can't be repaired with a high level visit", O'Neil told VOA.

"The surge of illegal immigration at the southern border has overwhelmed federal agencies and resources and has created a significant national security vulnerability to the United States", Mr Kelly wrote. "Both presidents are keen to set a positive tone, a constructive tone moving forward", the official added. They were approved by the White House and distributed to the heads of U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Immigration and Customs Enforcement and Citizenship and Immigration Services, among others.

The memos direct federal immigration agencies to expand partnerships with local law enforcement, calling those relationships "excellent force multipliers" in federal immigration enforcement.

Such actions are prompting calls from prominent Mexicans for pushback.

It is not clear whether the United States has the authority to require Mexico to accept, for instance, Honduran or Guatemalan citizens just because those people traversed Mexico to enter the United States.

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"We are surprised that even a ticket can get us back to Mexico", said the 41-year-old Ramos, who with her husband and three children left Ciudad Juarez because of drug violence and death threats in 2008 and entered the USA on tourist visas that have since expired. The program, known as the 287 (g) program, after the section of immigration law that authorizes it, was dormant for years under Obama's policies.