Mexican, US presidents discuss bilateral development over call

Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrado

Mexico City,  The president of Mexico said he had held a telephone conversation with his United States counterpart in which both leaders expressed their willingness to maintain a bilateral relationship based on friendship and cooperation between the two neighbouring countries.

Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said in a Twitter message on Wednesday that the phone chat with Donald Trump had been “good”, Efe news reported.

“The will to maintain a relationship of friendship and cooperation between our peoples and our governments was reaffirmed,” the Mexican president said.

Trump later retweeted his counterpart’s post, which was written in Spanish.

A few hours earlier, Lopez Obrador had described the meeting between his foreign affairs secretary, Marcelo Ebrard, and US officials in Washington – where both parties evaluated the progress made on an immigration agreement signed in June – as “successful.”

During his daily press briefing, the Mexican leader said that the meeting in the US capital ended with both sides agreeing to keep up their development cooperation policies and to “put confrontation aside.”

Lopez Obrador even thanked Trump for having a respectful attitude toward Mexico.

Ebrard first met with a delegation led by US Vice President Mike Pence at the White House and later spoke with Trump to review the migration accord, thanks to which Washington withdrew its threat of tariffs on Mexico.

The agreement established a review period of 90 days, which ended this month, so that both parties could judge the effectiveness of the action Mexico was taking to stem the flow of Central American migrants to the US.

Meanwhile, the US Supreme Court on Wednesday provisionally gave the Trump administration the green light to deny asylum to undocumented migrants who had previously gone through Mexico or other countries without requesting refuge there first.

The 7-2 ruling is not definitive but is set to affect the US government’s asylum policy as the legal battle rages on in the lower courts.

“BIG United States Supreme Court WIN for the Border on Asylum!” Trump tweeted shortly after the decision became known.

Since he came into office in January 2017, Trump has made the toughening of the US’ asylum system one of his main priorities as part of a broader nativist platform and discourse that tapped into the pervasive xenophobia of his political base.