Border govs sign joint agreement

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Conference held in New Mexico after Mexican governors boycott Arizona

By Carol A. Clark

SANTA FE — Governors of the states lining both sides of the U.S.-Mexico border signed a joint statement at the Border Governors Conference saying they “recognize the need for comprehensive immigration reform” in the United States and for a deportation process “based on the fundamental premise of respecting the human dignity and human rights of individuals being repatriated.”
“These are not just words, but a program of action,” said U.S. Ambassador to Mexico Carlos Pascual of the joint agreement. “This is a forum for action because of the leadership that is here today.”
The governors gathered at the Eldorado Hotel for the 28th annual Border Governors Conference.
Immigration, arms trafficking and border violence were some of the tough issues they tackled as well as energy and economic development.
New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson and California Lt. Gov. Abel Maldonado co-hosted the event, which was originally set for Phoenix and was nearly cancelled.
All six Mexican border governors wrote Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer and said that they intended to boycott this year’s conference after she advocated the Arizona state law giving local police broader authority to question immigration status during traffic stops.
Brewer answered in a letter canceling the entire conference.

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