Mexico’s Presidential Front-Runner Stirs Firestorm With Ex-Fugitive Senate Pick

02/20/2018 Bloomberg

Mexico City

Mexico’s leftist presidential front-runner Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador stirred up a hornets’ nest of social media outrage by listing a one-time fugitive union leader as a possible Senate pick ahead of July’s general election.

The Twitter storm began over the weekend when Lopez Obrador’s Morena party placed Napoleon Gomez Urrutia among those who would become senators through proportional representation, meaning he’d win through voter support for Morena and not direct election. Gomez Urrutia has been living in Canada since at least 2008, when Mexico requested an extradition order for him to face charges of bilking $55 million in union funds.
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Mexico becomes first Latin American country to join the IEA

02/19/2018 United Press International

environment - energy - light bulb with paddy riceBy entering the “most important energy forum in the world,” Mexico is the newest, and first Latin American, country to join the IEA, its government announced.

Mexico deposited its signature on the treaty for the International Energy Agency in Belgium during the weekend, becoming the first member in Latin America.

“With this final step, Mexico enters the most important energy forum in the world,” Mexican Energy Secretary Joaquín Coldwell said in a statement. “We will take our part in setting the world’s energy policies, receive experienced advisory in best international practices, and participate in emergency response exercises.”

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Headlines

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1. The pre-presidential candidate for the Frente Ciudadano por México coalition, Ricardo Anaya, accused the Investigation and National Security Center (CISEN) of espionage. Alfonso Navarrete, Mexico’s Interior Minister, affirmed that the Interior Ministry partnered with the government of Veracruz to monitor Anaya’s pre-campaign for security purposes, not espionage. Navarrete ordered the suspension of a CISEN sub-delegate in Veracruz because the delegate failed to inform the Interior Minister of the event.

Read more: Excelsior, Milenio, Jornada, El Universal

2. The National Electoral Institute (INE) must ask the independent candidates for the Presidency of the Republic for information on the citizen support signatures they have compiled. The Superior Chamber of the Electoral Tribunal of the Judicial Power of the Federation (TEPJF) issued a ruling ordering the INE to conduct investigations to determine if there is an alleged traffic of electoral rolls used by some aspirants to gather rubrics. According to the INE, 187 people obtained the proper accreditation to run as independent candidates in the 2018 election.

Read more: El Universal, Excelsior, Reforma, El Financiero

3. The Morelos of Chilapa convent school is now closed. Bishop Salvador Rangel Mendoza stated that the school’s administrators and a group of nuns abandoned the school following the murder of the mother, father, and sister of a nun.

Read more: Excelsior, Proceso, El Universal, Milenio

4. Admiral Vidal Francisco Soberón Sanz, Secretary of the Navy (SEMAR), stated that “the armed forces are prepared for [a change in government] and will support the president, regardless of the party that nominates him.” Soberón Sanz proposed that the armed forces work closely with state governors and municipal presidents in order to create a safe electoral environment when people are heading to the polls.

Read more: Jornada, Milenio, El Universal, Excelsior

US Embassy mission member dies in Mexico climbing accident

02/13/2018 The Washington Post

Image result for pico de orizaba

MEXICO CITY — The U.S. Embassy in Mexico said Tuesday a member of the U.S. diplomatic mission has died after a climbing mishap on Mexico’s Pico de Orizaba mountain.

Members of a diplomatic mission can include embassy employees, their families and some support personnel. The embassy did not specify whether or in what rank the climbers were employed, nor did it release their names or hometowns because of privacy concerns.

But the embassy said in a statement that “we are extremely grateful to the Government of Mexico for its prompt assistance in the operation to rescue two U.S. citizen climbers.”

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Mexico consumer confidence dips amid NAFTA uncertainty

02/06/2018 Reuters

Money, Currency, Mexican Peso

MEXICO CITY (Reuters) – Mexico’s consumer confidence index dipped to 85.9 in January when adjusted for seasonal factors, falling 3.1 percent from the previous month, the national statistics agency said on Tuesday.

Despite the month-on-month drop, consumer confidence was up 23 percent from January 2017, when the inauguration of U.S. President Donald Trump sparked widespread concerns about the prospects for the Mexican economy after he repeatedly attacked Mexico on the campaign trail.

Nevertheless, ongoing uncertainty continues about the future of the North American Free Trade Agreement, a critical pillar of the nation’s economy, which caused the Mexican peso to vacillate widely in January. Consumers have also been hit by high inflation and interest rates.

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Trump Wants a Border Wall. See What’s in Place Already. (Interactive Map)

02/06/2018 New York Times 

map_of_mexico_demisThe 2,000-mile United States border with Mexico is defined by rugged terrain and the Rio Grande, which act as natural barriers.

Most U.S. border land east of El Paso, Tex., is privately owned. To the west, most of the land is owned by the federal government.

The government has built nearly 700 miles of wall and fencing since 2006, mostly on federal land and where the terrain does not provide a natural barrier.

Some of the fencing is tall — higher than 10 feet — and concentrated near populated areas.

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Marco Antonio Sánchez: Missing Mexico teen found after five days

01/30/2018 BBC

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Ronaldo Schemidt/AFP – Getty Images

Marco Antonio Sánchez, the Mexican secondary school student whose disappearance five days ago triggered protests, has been located.

Marco, 17, was found on Sunday evening wandering Melchor Ocampo, north of Mexico City, near where a court had released him the previous evening.

Police in Mexico City had arrested him on Tuesday for allegedly stealing a mobile phone he was using.

His whereabouts where unknown for five days and a city-wide alarm was raised.

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