Raul Cervantes and Jeff Sessions, the Mexican and U.S. attorneys general, held their first meeting today in Washington.
Now, all the senior cabinet officials on both sides of the bilateral relationship, with the exception of Robert Lighthizer, who has not yet been confirmed as USTR, have met for initial working meetings.
Issues discussed included bilateral cooperation on extradition, technical assistance, human trafficking, money laundering, corruption, and all forms of illicit cross-border activity. “Both officials reiterated their commitment to cooperate on the interchange of information in order to identify and dismantle transnational criminal organizations, as well as to combat the illegal traffic in drugs and weapons,” according to the PGR’s press release.
Whether by coincidence or not, the meeting coincided with the announcement of the recovery by the PGR and Federal Police of Tom Brady’s stolen Super Bowl LI jersey, acting on information provided by the FBI and Houston police. The jersey (and other stolen football memorabilia) were reportedly recovered on March 12 in a house in Atizapán, Mexico State and have already been returned to the U.S. Reporting in Excelsior and NYT.
A visibly angry President Peña Nieto gave a very short TV address tonight, after Trump’s signing of executive orders and an ABC News interview
calling again for Mexico to pay for the border wall. A translation of EPN’s address
Today, the President of the United States signed two executive orders related to our country: one to implement immigration measures and another to extend the wall at the border.
In response, I have ordered the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to strengthen measures to protect our compatriots.
The 50 Mexican Consulates in the United States will become authentic advocates for the rights of migrants.
Our communities are not alone. The Mexican Government will provide them with the legal advice that guarantees the protection they need.
I call on legislators and civil society organizations to join efforts to back and support them.
Where there is a Mexican migrant at risk who needs our support, there we must be, there our country must be.
I regret and reject the decision of the United States to continue building a wall that, for years, far from uniting us, divides us.
Mexico does not believe in walls.
I have said it over and over again: Mexico will not pay for any wall.
These executive orders also occur at a time when our country is initiating talks to negotiate the new rules of cooperation, trade, investment, security and migration in the North American region.
This negotiation is very important for the strength, certainty and future of our economy and our society.
As President of the Republic, I fully assume the responsibility of defending and protecting the interests of Mexico and Mexicans.
It is my duty to face the problems and face the challenges.
Based on the final report of the Mexican officials currently in Washington, and after consultation with the leadership of the Senate and the National Conference of Governors, I will have to make decisions on the next steps.
Mexico offers and demands respect, as the fully sovereign Nation that we are.
Mexico endorses its friendship with the people of the United States and its willingness to reach agreements with its government — agreements in favor of Mexico and Mexicans.