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President Biden will virtually meet with Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador on Friday to discuss migration security and economic cooperation as the immigration crisis along the southern border rages on.
“In this virtual event, the two leaders will discuss their vision for the Ninth Summit of the Americas and how North America can lead on priority initiatives for the region,” White House press secretary Jen Psaki said in a statement.
“They also plan to discuss cooperation on migration, joint development efforts in Central America, competitiveness and economic growth, security, energy, and economic cooperation.”
The upcoming discussions come five months after the two world leaders spoke in November.
It also comes as both nations face an increasing migration crisis that is only expected to get worse in the coming weeks with the ending of Title 42.
On April 1, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced its intention to let the Trump-era health order expire, which has allowed border officials to quickly expel migrants without hearing asylum claims.
The order was set to expire on May 23, however, on Monday, a Louisiana federal court issued a temporary restraining order blocking the move.
“Our Office just obtained a temporary restraining order to keep Title 42 in place,” Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt tweeted Monday. “This is a huge victory for border security, but the fight continues on.”
A hearing has been scheduled for May 13 in the case.
The Biden administration has been severely criticized by lawmakers of both parties for allowing Title 42 to be lifted, citing a massive influx of migrants that is expected to cross the border this spring.
However, the administration has shifted the point of action to Congress.
“Congress would have to take action in order for the date to not be May 23,” Psaki told reporters during Monday’s daily press briefing.
She later clarified that because Congress gave the CDC the authority to impose and lift Title 42, they would need to “make any decision about a change to the authority that they gave the CDC.”
However, even with the order still in place, the number of migrant encounters along the border is soaring.
Officials reported encountering a high of more than 221,000 migrants in March, the most in any single month since President Biden took office.
Previously, the highest number of encounters was July 2021, when 213,593 encounters were reported.