The United States could not easily grant political asylum to Central Americans because it would mean openly admitting that Central Americans were being persecuted. It would also mean that the United States government would have to accept responsibility for some of the persecution. Under President Ronald Reagan, the U.S. government provided military and economic aid to military juntas (military groups that take control of a government at the conclusion of a revolution) in Central America, thereby sustaining the repression from which the political refugees were fleeing. As a result of friendly relations between the United States and Central America, many Central American political refugees have been declared illegal aliens, and those who are not in sanctuary — hidden from
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