US urging Central America to tackle poverty, corruption

SAN JOSE, Costa Rica (AP) — U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken is trying to entice Central American nations to tackle the corruption and poverty that have helped drive a surge of migrants to the U.S.-Mexico border and presented an early challenge for the Biden administration. America’s top diplomat is making his first visit to Central America since taking office. Blinken is in Costa Rica, and he’s met with foreign ministers and leaders from the region and Mexico. He’s avoided publicly criticizing any particular government, focusing instead on Biden administration plans to distribute COVID-19 vaccines and other assistance such as a proposed $4 billion aid package for the region.