Amnesty Intl – Mexican Congress passed the General Law on Torture which was promised over two years ago by the Mexican president after a national public outcry following massive human rights violations in the case of 43 disappeared students. Authorities must now ensure all those responsible for these heinous crimes under international law face justice.
U.S. President Donald Trump indicated an openness on Monday to delaying his push to secure funds for his promised border wall with Mexico, potentially eliminating a sticking point as lawmakers worked to avoid a looming shutdown of the federal government.
Trump, in a private meeting with conservative media outlets, said he may wait until Republicans begin drafting the budget blueprint for the fiscal year that starts on Oct. 1 to seek government funds for building a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border, the White House confirmed.
Trump, whose approval ratings have slid since he took office, is facing a Friday deadline for Congress to pass a spending bill funding the government through September or risk marking his 100th day in office on Saturday with a government shutdown.
“Now the bipartisan and bicameral negotiators can continue working on the outstanding issues,” Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer said in a statement on Monday night.
SD Union-Tribune – Monday marked the fourth day since San Diego-based migrant activist Hugo Castro disappeared in Mexico on Thursday after he made a plea for help and offered clues to his whereabouts on Facebook Live.
BBC -The collapse of a partially-built car park in the Mexican capital has killed seven construction workers. At least 10 people were hurt in the accident in Mexico City. An official blamed a flaw in the construction process on the collapse. He said a heavy load had been placed incorrectly.
LATimes -The new Netflix series “Ingobernable” — “Ungovernable” — is set in Mexico. But the show’s star had a problem: She couldn’t go there without risking arrest. Kate del Castillo, one of Mexico’s best-known actors, was wanted by authorities for having met with Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman, Mexico’s best-known drug lord, while he was on the run in 2015.
NYT – John F. Kelly, the homeland security secretary, said Wednesday that it was doubtful that a wall along the full border with Mexico would ever be built, despite an oft-repeated campaign promise by President Trump. “It is unlikely that we will build a wall from sea to shining sea,” Kelly told senators on the Homeland Security Committee.
MySA – Two teenage girls were posing for selfies when they were killed by a plane in Mexico earlier this week, according to media reports. El Diario de Chihuahua said that Nitzia Mendoza Corral, 18, and Clarissa Morquecho Miranda, 17, were hit while standing on the plane’s landing strip after leaving a horse race March 26 in Chínipas, Chihuahua.
MLive – President Donald Trump wants to squeeze this year’s Great Lakes cleanup funding to help make a down payment on a wall along the U.S. border with Mexico. A $50 million cut to current fiscal year funding for the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative is part of $18 billion in immediate federal budget cuts proposed this week by the White House.
By J.J. Gallagher / ABC
In a withering editorial published on Sunday, the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Mexico said that Mexican firms interested in helping build President Donald Trump’s proposed border wall are “traitors to the homeland.”
“It is not two or three, but more than 500 companies,” from Mexico expressing interest in Trump’s proposed border wall, the editorial says. “For them, the end justifies the means.”
Building a wall along the nearly 2,000-mile U.S. border with Mexico was estimated by congressional Republicans to cost $12 billion to $15 billion. An internal report prepared for Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly estimated that a wall along the entire border would cost about $21 billion, according to the Associated Press.
After repeatedly claiming that Mexico would pay for the wall, President Trump requested $2.6 billion to start the initial planning and construction in his 2018 budget request. Congress is expected to take up the proposed budget before the end of the fiscal year in September.
The editorial, published in the Archdiocese’s weekly publication Desde la fe, lambasted the wall as “an open threat that violates relations and peace.”
San Diego Union-Tribune – With Donald Trump’s presidency creating a rift in U.S.-Mexico relations, dozens of San Diegans and bajacalifornianos are joining forces this week in Mexico’s capital, aiming to showcase their strong bilateral relationship and win support for border projects. Close to 90 people are making the trek from the border to Mexico City for three days of meetings with high-level Mexican officials that begin Monday. They carry a common message: that neither Trump’s plans for a fortified border wall and nor his call to re-negotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement will change the fact that Tijuana and San Diego are intensely inter-dependent on many fronts.
News4 – More than a hundred Americans and Mexicans came together for a rally between the two countries Saturday afternoon on the International Bridge between Acuña in Mexico and Del Rio in Texas. “It’s a reality on the border. Every border state – in the states, in Mexico – we’re interdependent and you can’t deny it,” said Jorge Ortiz, a dual citizen living in Acuña.
AP – Mexican authorities have rescued 14 crocodiles and found 20 others dead in a squatters’ settlement where people were apparently “milking” the crocs for their blood. The office for environmental protection said that some local residents in Chiapas wanted the blood because they believed it could cure cancer, diabetes, AIDS and other diseases. Scientists say there is no evidence that crocodile blood cures these diseases.
Mexico News Daily – Mexico’s ranking on the United Nations Human Development Index has declined for the fourth year in a row. The 2016 report puts Mexico in 77th place on the list of 185 countries. Norway placed first and the Central African Republic last.
Financial Times – Mexico has called on its national companies to “examine their conscience” and refuse to tender bids to build Donald Trump’s wall. Some 700 companies have registered interest for tenders for the 30-foot high structure.
NYT – Even as Mexico fumes over President Trump’s aggressive stance toward its people, the Mexican government is quietly trying to rip up basic legal protections for its citizens at home and gut longstanding efforts to fix the nation’s broken rule of law. Legal experts fear the move will set back human rights in Mexico by decades.
By Todd A. Gillman / Dallas News
The budget plan the White House rolled out Thursday morning includes $4.1 billion for a border wall through next year — and no mechanism to follow through on President Donald Trump’s signature campaign promise to force Mexico to cough up the money.
The plan falls far short on promises to dramatically expand the ranks of Border Patrol and immigration enforcement agents. But it does call for 20 new Justice Department attorneys to work on scooping up border land for the wall through purchases and, presumably, eminent domain.
The president is asking Congress for $1.5 billion toward the wall for the remainder of this year and $2.6 billion in fiscal 2018.
“It’s all that we think that we can spend this year,” White House budget director Mick Mulvaney told reporters Wednesday. “The next question is going to be how many miles of wall does that build. We don’t know the answer to that question because we haven’t settled on construction types. We haven’t settled on where we’re going to start.”
Mexico News Daily – Monterrey is the best city in Mexico for quality of life, according to the latest quality of living survey by Mercer, the international human resources consulting firm. The capital of Nuevo León was one of two Mexican cities on the list of 231 and ranked 110th. Mexico City was ranked No. 128, down one position from last year.
News 24 – Mexico’s state-run oil company says four people have died from an explosion at a fuel storage and distribution depot in the central state of Guanajuato.
CNN – With millions of gallons of raw sewage spilled into the Pacific Ocean surface and onto the shores of southern California, officials in the United States and Mexico have launched a bi-national investigation into the spill that apparently originated in Mexico.
By Nacha Cattan and Eric Martin / Bloomberg
Mexico’s top trade negotiator doubled down on threats to break off talks to rework Nafta, saying his country will walk away if the U.S. insists on slapping duties or quotas on any products from south of the border.
“The moment that they say, ‘We’re going to put a 20 percent tariff on cars, I
get up from the table,” Mexican Economy Minister Ildefonso Guajardo said in an interview. “Bye-bye.”
This doesn’t mean, Guajardo emphasized, that Mexico would be looking to scrap Nafta. But by saying it refuses to even discuss the kind of tariffs President Donald Trump has long trumpeted, the country is ratcheting up the pressure on U.S. negotiators and effectively daring them to pull out of the 23-year-old pact.
Trump has lambasted the accord — which also includes Canada — as unfair and responsible for a “massive” imbalance favoring Mexico. It last year shipped $294 billion worth of goods north while the U.S. sent $231 billion south.
Mexican officials have said they expect official talks to start in June.