Category Archives: Diplomacy

DHS Secretary Kelly heads to Mexico

Washington Examiner -Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly will meet with Mexican government officials in Mexico City over three days this week.Kelly will discuss building the U.S.-Mexico relationship while working together to combat transnational criminal organizations, enhance regional security and boost economic cooperation.

Leaders of Mexico, Germany to meet in “solidarity” against Trump

German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto shake hands after talks in Berlin in 2016. (Tobias Schwarz / AFP/Getty Images)
German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto shake hands after talks in Berlin in 2016. (Tobias Schwarz / AFP/Getty Images)

By Kate Linthicum / Los Angeles Times

In what her government has called “a sign of solidarity,” German Chancellor Angela Merkel will meet with Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto today, Friday.

High on the agenda during her two-day state visit to Mexico will be their mutual political dilemma: President Trump.

From the launch of his presidential campaign two years ago through his early days in the White House, Trump made Mexico his punching bag. He called Mexican immigrants criminals, pledged to tax imports from Mexico and insisted that Mexico would pay for construction of a border wall.

But in recent months, he has extended his ire to a much wider circle of nations, many of which, like Mexico, are longtime U.S. allies.

That includes Germany, which the president has criticized for its trade surplus with the U.S., for resettling large numbers of Syrian migrants and for not spending enough on defense to meet its commitment to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization.

Europe “can no longer rely” on its longtime friend the United States, Merkel said at an election rally in Munich saying people on the continent must “take our fate into our own hands.”

Merkel appears poised to do that on her visit to Mexico, where she and Peña Nieto will discuss trade and how to move forward on combating climate change after Trump’s decision to withdraw from the Paris agreement.

Vicente Fox delivers harsh missive to Trump

SBS – After catalysing one of the more poignant viral hashtags at the beginning of this year, Vicente Fox has returned to deliver a message to the President of the United States amid the noise surrounding James Comey’s testimony. “Mexico will not pay for the f—– wall,” Fox opens the video, shared on social channel Super Deluxe.

Videgaray calls wall plan “a hostile act”

LAT – Mexico Foreign Secretary Luis Videgaray called President Trump’s proposal to build a border wall “an unfriendly, hostile act” that will further aggravate increasingly tense relations between the longtime allies. “It is not part of a bilateral discussion, and we will not collaborate in the construction,” he told a group of Mexican legislators. “It’s a waste of resources.”

Frayed U.S.-Mexico Ties Mend as Trump Refrains From Attacks

Mexican citizens demonstrating against U.S. President Donald Trump at a rally in Mexico City in February. (Mario Guzman/European Press Photo Agency)
Mexican citizens demonstrating against U.S. President Donald Trump at a rally in Mexico City in February. (Mario Guzman/European Press Photo Agency)

By David Luhnow and Jacob Schlesinger / Wall Street Journal

Earlier this year, U.S.-Mexican relations hit their worst crisis in decades when Presidents Donald Trump and Enrique Peña Nieto quarreled over who would pay for a proposed border wall, prompting the Mexican president to call off a planned trip to Washington.

But then a funny thing happened: Trump, at the urging of senior aides, stopped attacking Mexico on Twitter and in public statements, opening up space to officials from both countries to markedly improve ties since then, U.S. and Mexican officials say.

“The relationship is much more constructive,” a senior Mexican government official said. A senior U.S. official agreed, saying the greater contact between the sides had improved ties.

Mexican officials say they are more confident now that the two countries can strike a deal to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement, which Trump attacked repeatedly on the campaign trail as the worst trade deal the U.S. ever signed.

“We’ve gone from panic to concern,” another top Mexican official said.

The White House declined to comment.

Mexico treads carefully as it confronts Venezuela

CNSNews – Mexico’s insistence that the government of Venezuela return to “democratic norms” is not an effort to take the lead in Latin America’s response to the country’s worsening economic and political crisis, according to political analysts here. Instead, the government of President Enrique Peña Nieto believes that to remain silent is not in Mexico’s best interests, said Jorge Chabat, professor of international studies at the Center for Research and Teaching on Economics (CIDE) in Mexico City.

Vacationing Americans chant “Build the wall”

Global News – Anaximandro and Sully Amable were all set to enjoy a night watching a pirate show on a boat in the waters off of Cancun. That’s when some U.S. tourists aboard the ship started chanting “build the wall,” in a reference to U.S. President Donald Trump’s plan to build a wall along the U.S. border with Mexico. The chanting didn’t stop even after it clearly made Mexican workers and tourists aboard the ship uncomfortable.

Top U.S. drug official praises cooperation with Mexico

LAT – A top U.S. drug official made a strong case Thursday for continued cooperation with Mexico on fighting drug-trafficking, saying successful law enforcement already has created a virtual wall. In a subtle dig at the Trump administration, William Brownfield, the State department’s senior diplomat involved in drug policy, said that despite a crisis drug epidemic, the United States and Mexico were in a better position than ever to combat it.

Tillerson, Kelly hope to ease U.S.-Mexico tensions

VoA – U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly met Thursday with Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto and members of his cabinet, in what is expected to be the first in a series of high-level meetings focusing on drug trafficking, trade and immigration.

The two key members of President Donald Trump’s Cabinet were hoping to soothe concern and anger about the new U.S. administration’s policies toward Mexico.

Pope issues veiled rebuke of Trump’s border wall

Independent – Pope Francis has issued a thinly veiled rebuke of Donald Trump’s cornerstone policy to build a wall along the border with Mexico. The pontiff did not refer to the US President by name or directly mention his plan to build a fence along the border but instead emphasised the need to forge bridges rather than walls.