US-Mexico Meeting/Mayan Train’s Path Will RemainBy Paloma Duran | Mon, 07/11/2022 - 13:24
US-Mexico meeting. President Andrés Manuel López Obrador said he will tomorrow meet with US President Joe Biden to discuss key issues and achieve greater bilateral cooperation that favors both countries. “It is a meeting to reaffirm our commitment to work together for the benefit of our people, that is the purpose. There are key bilateral issues that we will discuss, such as migration and cooperation programs for development.”
On July 12, López Obrador will meet with Biden to discuss immigration, investment, and economic issues, which were discussed at the Summit of the Americas. However, since López Obrador did not attend, the new meeting is to discuss on key agreements.
Migration is expected to be the main topic to be discussed. Recently, the US Supreme Court issued a ruling, allowing President Biden to remove the Remain in Mexico policy. The ruling is considered a victory for migrants, NGOs and civil organizations, since the policy has been accused for violating human rights. However, others fear that the arrival of migrants will increase, exacerbating the humanitarian crisis at the US-Mexico border.
My government does not persecute anyone: AMLO. López Obrador stressed that the investigation led by the Attorney General's Office (FGR) against former Mexican president Enrique Peña Nieto will be carried out with complete transparency. “We act with transparency and we will continue to do so. I have no problem with Peña Nieto, we are just doing our job. Even a few years ago I thanked Peña Nieto for holding clean elections.”
The financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) and the FGR have accused Peña Nieto of financial irregularities for receiving more than MX$26 million (US$1.26 million) through transfers from Spain since August 2019. In addition, he has been accused of having a very close relationship with two companies accused of tax irregularities. FIU highlighted that until now the name of those involved in the irregular movement of accounts is unknown. However, it is estimated that around 15 people participated in the corruption scheme.
Peña Nieto, former Head of the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI), was president of Mexico from 2012 to 2018. His government has been criticized for having high levels of corruption, especially in the cases of Ayotzinapa and Odebrecht. In October 2020 Nieto received a golden visa to live and work in Spain. After the announcement of the investigation, Peña Nieto wrote on Twitter that he trusts the Mexican authorities to clarify the origin of his money and prove its legality.
INAH will not divert section 5 of the Mayan train despite archaeological discoveries. The director of the National Institute of Anthropology and History (INAH) Diego Prieto stressed that no section of the Mayan Train will be diverted due to archaeological discoveries. “Of course, there are archaeological discoveries along section 5 of the Mayan Train. The whole region is full of archaeological sites. In all the areas that we have worked we have found these discoveries. We have to make sure we count on archeologists to recover these findings.”
The general population continues to resist the construction of the Mayan Train Section 5 South, a key part of one of President López Obrador's flagship infrastructure megaprojects, since it could damage the karst landscapes, harm the integrity of cenotes and cause significant deforestation, as well as destroy archeological and paleontological remains. Following the suspension of the project's construction by a federal judge in May, 2022, the National Fund for the Promotion of Tourism (FONATUR) and environmental ministry SEMARNAT published the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA), since its absence caused the project's suspension. As part of the attempts to reactivate construction, federal authorities called for a consultation to assess the project's viability. However, civil organizations said the consultation process was found to be lacking substantial information.