.- The problem of illegal immigration in the United States could be dealt with more efficiently by focusing on economic development rather than on border patrols, said an influential Latin-American cardinal.
"Instead of trying to build walls or putting the National Guard on the border, we should see how development can be enhanced and labor services created," suggested Cardinal Oscar Andrés Rodríguez Maradiaga of Honduras, reported the Associated Press.
Programs for economic development could address both the concerns of Americans who want to slow immigration and the concerns of Latin Americans, who are troubled by the loss of talent and youth through emigration.
Assistance with economic development in Latin America would provide job opportunities in the developing countries and stem the flow of immigration, he reportedly said.
The cardinal said Honduras, for example, could supply palm oil and sugar cane for use in alternative fuels such as biodiesel and ethanol.
The Cardinal-Archbishop of Tegucigalpa was in the U.S. to speak at a conference on Catholic evangelization and Hispanic youth.