Mexico holds off Trump’s fire, but seen vulnerable to new pressure

MEXICO CITY (Reuters) – Mexico averted probably the most excessive immigration concession sought by U.S. President Donald Trump within the deal reached to fend off threatened tariffs, but it’s left even weaker than earlier than within the face of potential new pressure from Trump as he formally kicks off his reelection marketing campaign this month.

Trucks wait in queue for border customs management, to cross into the U.S., on the Otay border crossing in Tijuana, Mexico June 7, 2019. REUTERS/Jorge Duenes

Under the deal reached on Friday, Mexico agreed to use a big a part of its newly shaped National Guard to maintain again immigrants crossing from Guatemala, and to absorb probably tens of 1000’s of individuals in search of asylum within the United States whereas their instances are adjudicated.

Led by Foreign Minister Marcel Ebrard, negotiators in Washington resisted Trump’s core demand that Mexico be declared a secure third nation, a classification that will oblige Central Americans crossing by means of Mexico to search secure haven there, not the United States.

But the 2 sides agree extra motion might be taken if inside 90 days the measures don’t have the specified results of drastically bringing down the numbers of undocumented migrants reaching the U.S. border from ranges which might be at a more-than-decade excessive. Last month alone 132,00zero have been apprehended by U.S. authorities.

Former World Trade Organization head Pascal Lamy known as Trump’s method to coercing its neighbor and ally “hostage-taking,” reflecting widely-held issues in Mexico that the U.S. president will come again with extra threats to extract better concessions.

Those fears are sharpened as a result of Trump has used Mexico-bashing to fireplace up his base on repeated events since kicking off his first marketing campaign for the White House in 2015. All indicators are that he intends to maintain the give attention to immigration and cross-border points in his second-term marketing campaign, which formally launches on June 18.

“We think the threats, demands and Trump tweets against Mexico will continue, especially because it’s all tied up with the politics of the 2020 election,” stated Gabriela Siller, an economist at Mexican financial institution Banco Base.

Siller expects the peso foreign money to rise when markets open on Monday on aid commerce warfare has been averted, but she stated the uptick might be short-lived. The peso, which had been pummeled in latest months on fears over a commerce warfare, on Friday strengthened zero.5% after Trump tweeted that there was a “good chance” a deal could be reached with Mexico.


Vicente Fox, a former Mexican president and long-term critic of President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, tweeted that by permitting the United States to dictate how, for instance, Mexico makes use of its safety forces, the federal government has already ceded a few of its sovereignty.

That sentiment was echoed by center-left politician Angel Avila, on the opposite aspect of the political aisle from Fox, who known as the deal “a surrender.”

“Mexico shouldn’t militarize its southern border,” stated Avila, who heads the Party of the Democratic Revolution.

Others, nevertheless, assume Lopez Obrador had little selection past giving some floor within the negotiations, as a result of the threatened tariffs would have brought on financial devastation in Mexico, whose economic system contracted within the first quarter of this yr.

Francisco Labastida, a former presidential candidate, stated the size of the present immigration disaster was a menace to Mexico itself, and motion was wanted no matter Trump.

“Mexico would have had to change its migration policy for its own reasons due to national security,” he stated, arguing that present numbers are unmanageable.

Carlos Pascual, a former U.S. ambassador to Mexico, praised the deal as preferable to the downward spiral of a tit-for-tat commerce warfare, but acknowledged it left Mexico open to additional pressure.

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“Mexico is weak economically and it’s always going to be vulnerable if the United States is willing to use economic policy to enforce national security policy,” he stated.

“There’s no doubt this leaves a Damocles sword hanging over Lopez Obrador’s head,” he stated, invoking a metaphor that describes an ever-present peril.

Reporting by David Alire Garcia; Additional reporting by Miguel Angel Gutierrez and Dave Graham; Editing by Frank Jack Daniel and Leslie Adler

Our Standards:The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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