Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto said that his country will not pay for Donald Trump’s border wall.
In a message to the nation, Enrique Pena Nieto said he “lamented” the plans for the barrier, adding that “Mexico doesn’t believe in walls”.
However, he made no mention of cancelling or postponing a trip to Washington on January 31 to meet President Donald Trump.
President Trump has signed an executive order for an “impassable physical barrier” and has insisted Mexico will reimburse the US for it.
Enrique Pena Nieto told the nation in a televised address: “I’ve said time and again; Mexico won’t pay for any wall.
“I regret and condemn the decision of the United States to continue construction of a wall that, for years, has divided us instead of uniting us.”
However, President Pena Nieto said his country offered “its friendship to the American people and its willingness to reach accords with their government”.
Mexican Foreign Minister Luis Videgaray – in Washington to lead a delegation that has held talks at the White House – told the Televisa network the president was still weighing January 31 visit but said “the meeting stands for now”.
Enrique Pena Nieto met Donald Trump – then a presidential candidate – in Mexico City in September and came under intense criticism at home and his current approval ratings are low.
Donald Trump said in an interview with ABC News that Mexico would “absolutely, 100%” reimburse the US for his wall.
However, Congress would have to approve funding for the structure, which is estimated to cost billions of dollars.
Building a 2,000 mile barrier along the Mexican border was one of Donald Trump’s key pledges in the election campaign.
The president spoke of a “crisis” on the southern US border as he signed the directives during a ceremony at the Department of Homeland Security on January 25.
The orders also called for hiring 10,000 immigration officials to help boost border patrol efforts.
“A nation without borders is not a nation,” Donald Trump said.
“Beginning today the United States gets back control of its borders.”
The executive orders are among a flurry expected on national and border security this week.
Donald Trump is next expected to announce immigration restrictions from seven countries with Muslim-majority populations in the Middle East and Africa. This could affect refugee programs.
These countries are believed to be Syria, Iraq, Iran, Libya, Sudan, Somalia and Yemen.
Mexican government says it is willing to discuss the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) with President-elect Donald Trump.
The NAFTA came into effect between the US, Canada and Mexico in 1994 when Bill Clinton was president.
The pact created one of the world’s largest free trade zones by reducing or eliminating tariffs on most products.
It was meant to benefit small businesses by lowering costs and reducing bureaucracy to facilitate buying and selling abroad.
Mexican Economy Minister Ildefonso Guajardo said his country would try to explain the “strategic importance” of the deal for the region to Donald Trump, who has heavily criticized it.
Image source Wikimedia
Canadian PM Justin Trudeau also said he was open to talks.
Donald Trump has called the pact as the worst trade deal the US has ever signed.
His strong protectionist sentiments on the campaign trail helped to win support in areas that were formerly manufacturing centers. Donald Trump has pledged to bring back US jobs lost to globalization.
Mexico and Canada fear losing access to the US market, on which they heavily depend.
The Mexican peso hit a record low following Donald Trump’s unexpected election victory and fell again on November 10 after recovering slightly.
Foreign Minister Claudia Ruiz Massieu said Mexico was willing to aim to “modernize” NAFTA with a Trump government and Canada, but also ruled out renegotiation.
Justin Trudeau said it was important to be open to discussion on trade deals.
No date has been set for talks but Mexico’s President Enrique Pena Nieto has said he and Donald Trump have agreed to meet, possibly before the latter’s inauguration in January.
Aside from attacking NAFTA, Donald Trump has also heavily criticized the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), a hugely ambitious deal signed between 12 countries that Mexico hoped to use to modernize NAFTA and expand its trade with Asia.
Ildefonso Guajardo said that in the event the TPP is not ratified by the US Congress, signatories should consider trying to implement the rest of the agreement without it.
President-elect Donald Trump has also angered Mexico by saying he would make it pay for a wall he wants to build on the shared border in order to keep out illegal migrants.
Mexican authorities are on high alert as Hurricane Newton is heading north-west towards the southern end of the Baja California peninsula with winds of about 75mph.
According to the US National Hurricane Center (NHC), Hurricane Newton could trigger flash floods.
The NHC warned that preparations to protect life and property “should be rushed to completion”.
On September 5, overcast skies in the Los Cabos municipality gave way to heavy rain and the wind was building in strength.
Image source NASA
Twelve shelters opened and drivers queued to fill their cars with fuel ahead of the hurricane’s arrival.
The same weather system lashed areas of the south-western state of Guerrero over the weekend before strengthening to a tropical storm.
Torrential rain that began on September 3 caused more than 30 mudslides across Guerrero, forcing main roads to close.
In Acapulco, floods and landslides affected dozens of homes and schools and about 200 people had to be rescued from a housing complex.
Newton reached hurricane strength over the Pacific on September 5, prompting the Mexican government to issue a hurricane warning for the west coast of Baja California Sur from north of Puerto Cortes to Cabo San Lazaro.
The region is a popular tourist destination.
The NHC said that at 15:00 local time, the eye of the hurricane was about 215 miles south-east of Cabo San Lucas and grinding towards the coast at about 16mph.
It said that on its current path, Hurricane Newton should be near or over the southern end of the peninsula on Tuesday morning, September 6.
The NHC said it would move across the peninsula and reach north-western Mexico early on September 7.
Over the weekend, Florida was battered by Hurricane Hermine, before it weakened to a post-tropical storm and drifted off the US east coast.
Donald Trump has defended his call for a wall on the Mexican border, during his visit to meet President Enrique Pena Nieto.
The GOP nominee said he did not discuss who would pay for the wall.
Donald Trump also called Mexicans “amazing” and “spectacular” people, in contrast to earlier comments branding Mexican migrants “rapists” and “murderers”.
President Pena Nieto said Mexicans had been hurt but he respected that Donald Trump genuinely wanted to build relations.
Donald Trump will later fly to Phoenix, Arizona, to deliver a key speech on measures to tackle illegal immigration.
He has seen his poll ratings slip since the GOP conventions last month.
Both nationally and in key states, Donald Trump trails Hillary Clinton, who enjoys particularly strong support among minorities.
Donald Trump said his words to Enrique Pena Nieto had been strong and straightforward.
He tried to put behind him his previous comments on Mexicans by saying those in the US had made a “great contribution”.
“I have a great feeling for Mexicans. They are amazing people,” he said.
Donald Trump said he had employed many Mexicans and that they were “beyond reproach, spectacular people with strong values of faith and community”.
He said: “We recognize and respect the right of either country to build a physical barrier or wall on any of its borders.”
But he said there was no discussion on who would pay for the wall.
Donald Trump had earlier threatened to stop cash earned by Mexicans based in the US being sent home until the country paid for it to be built.
He concluded by saying he was honored by President Pena Nieto’s invitation to visit, adding: “I call you a friend.”
Enrique Pena Nieto accepted there were border challenges but pointed out the massive contribution Mexicans have made to the US, and that “six million jobs rely on exports to Mexico”.
He said: “My priority is to protect Mexicans wherever they may be. That is my responsibility. Mexicans in the US are honest people, hard-working people who respect their families, their community and the law. They deserve everybody’s respect.”
President Pena Nieto has invited both candidates to visit Mexico, but has faced criticism at home over Donald Trump.
Former Mexican President Vicente Fox earlier told CNN: “We don’t like him. We don’t want him. We reject his visit.”
Former First Lady Margarita Zavala also tweeted: “We Mexicans have dignity, and we reject your hate speech.”
At least two demonstrations have been planned in Mexico City.
Hillary Clinton’s campaign has not yet said if she will travel to Mexico.
Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s ashes have been laid to rest in the Colombian city of Cartagena.
The ashes of the late Nobel Prize winning novelist were flown home from Mexico where he had lived for years and where he died in 2014 at the age of 87.
A ceremony was held in the cloisters of Cartagena University, near Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s family home in the city.
The author is best known for his magic realist novels One Hundred Years of Solitude and Love in the Time of Cholera.
A bronze bust of Gabriel Garcia Marquez was unveiled by the writer’s son Rodrigo Garcia Barcha in the center of the cloisters of the university as the centerpiece of the memorial.
Gabriel Garcia Marquez was considered the finest writer of the Spanish language since Cervantes
“It’s a day of joy mixed with sorrow,” the writer’s sister Aida Rosa Garcia Marquez told the French news agency AFP.
“But there is more joy than sorrow because to see a brother get to where Gabito reached can only bring joy.”
Gabriel Garcia Marquez was born in the town of Aracataca near Colombia’s northern Caribbean coast and started working as a journalist in the late 1940s in Cartagena.
The writer had lived since the 1980s in Mexico but his family decided he should be buried in Cartagena where many of his family members were also interred.
“Cartagena is the city where the Garcia Marquez family is based. It is where my grandparents are buried,” said Gonzalo Garcia Barcha, one of the writer’s two sons, from France where he now lives in an interview with AFP.
“It seemed natural to us that his ashes should be there too.”
Gabriel Garcia Marquez had a love-hate relationship with Cartagena; the city appears in several of his novels often depicted as a decadent place full of conflict with a class-ridden and racist society.
Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman’s top money launderer, Juan Manuel Alvarez Inzunza, has been arrested while on holiday in the southern state of Oaxaca, Mexican authorities say.
El Chapo Guzman, a former leader of the Sinaloa cartel, is currently awaiting extradition to the United States.
The Mexican drug lord was recaptured in January after breaking out of a high-security prison.
Juan Manuel Alvarez Inzunza, nicknamed Rey Midas (King Midas) is suspected of laundering $300 million-$400 million a year for the Sinaloa cartel through a network of companies and currency exchange centers.
A US federal court in Washington had requested Juan Manuel Alvarez Inzunza’s arrest and he is likely to be extradited.
El Chapo Guzman himself is also facing extradition to the US on charges of drug trafficking in California, and murder in Texas.
Earlier this month, the drug lord asked for the extradition process to progress rapidly so he could receive better treatment in prison.
Since El Chapo Guzman’s recapture in January, six months after he escaped from prison, he has been subject to a stricter regime.
Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman has been sent back to the maximum-security prison he escaped from six months ago after his recapture on January 8.
The Mexican drug lord was paraded before cameras before being bundled into a helicopter to Altiplano prison in central Mexico.
El Chapo (Shorty) Guzman escaped from there in July through a tunnel dug in the showers.
He was arrested on January 8 in the city of Los Mochis in his home state of Sinaloa – which he had come to dominate through the drugs cartel he led.
During the early-morning raid, El Chapo Guzman managed to flee through a drain but was later caught by marines in a shootout.
Six people, including one marine, are reported to have been killed.
Part of the reason El Chapo Guzman was tracked down was because he contacted actors and producers in the hope of making a movie about his life, Mexico’s Attorney General Arely Gomez said.
Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto described Joaquin Guzman’s arrest as a “victory for the rule of law”.
The United States congratulated the Mexican government but did not indicate whether prosecutors would seek Joaquin Guzman’s extradition.
In a statement, Attorney General Loretta Lynch said Joaquin Guzman had caused “significant violence, suffering and corruption on multiple continents”.
El Chapo Guzman’s July escape was his second – he was first arrested in Guatemala in 1993 and escaped from Puente Grande jail in 2001, reportedly in a laundry basket after bribing officials. He was on the run for 13 years before being held again in 2014.
Mexican businessman Manuel Trillo, who is accused of financing the jailbreak of Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman drug lord, has been sent to prison pending trial.
Prosecutors think Manuel Trillo helped Shorty Guzman break out of the Altiplano jail in July.
Now Manuel Trillo has been sent to that very same prison.
A manhunt is under way to catch El Chapo Guzman, who leads the Sinaloa drug cartel, since he escaped through a one mile-long tunnel on July 11.
According to investigators, Manuel Trillo is the financial operator of the Sinaloa cartel and bankrolled El Chapo Guzman’s escape.
He is also accused of using illicit funds to purchase properties from 2012 to 2015 under false names.
More than 30 people have been arrested in connection with Joaquin Guzman’s escape, including the prison governor and several guards.
El Chapo Guzman’s arrest in February 2014 was seen as a coup for Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto.
The cartel leader had been on the run for 13 years since escaping from another maximum security jail in 2001, reportedly hidden inside a laundry cart.
However, El Chapo Guzman’s spectacular break-out from the Altiplano prison caused huge embarrassment.
Video footage showed how guards failed to detect his escape until more than 20 minutes had passed.
Questions have also been raised how the prison authorities could have failed to notice the construction of the tunnel leading directly into El Chapo Guzman’s cell.
On CCTV footage leaked to the media, the sound of drilling can be heard reverberating through his cell.
Investigators say El Chapo Guzman’s associates must have been planning the jailbreak since shortly after his arrest.
Not only would the construction of the tunnel have taken time, but his associates also purchased a plot of land outside the jail and built a house to disguise the tunnel’s exit.
Attempts to recapture El Chapo Guzman have so far failed although authorities said he was injured when he narrowly escaped from a police operation last month. He is believed to be hiding in his home state of Sinaloa, in north-west Mexico.
More than 40 people have been killed in a shootout between Mexican security forces and an armed gang in the western state of Michoacan.
The large scale gunfight took place in Tanhuato near the Jalisco state border on May 22.
According to local reports, almost all the 43 dead were suspected criminals. At least one police officer was killed in the shootout.
The area between Michoacan and Jalisco states is known as a stronghold of the Jalisco New Generation drug cartel, which has mounted several large-scale attacks on federal and state forces in recent weeks.
The majority of those killed at a ranch are believed to have been members of the cartel, said National Security Commissioner Monte Alejandro Rubido.
He told reporters that the gunfight had lasted for about three hours and that a number of weapons had been recovered from the scene, including more than 30 rifles.
The gunbattle began when the police and security forces were checking reports of an “invasion” of the 277 acres ranch by a group of armed men.
The authorities later called in air and ground support.
Two years ago vigilante groups formed in Michoacan to drive out the Knights Templar drugs cartel. However, last week a former vigilante leader running for mayor in next month’s elections was shot dead.
The Jalisco New Generation cartel has increased its presence in the area, with Michoacan and Jalisco becoming among Mexico’s most violent states. Gang members are believed to have killed at least 20 police and soldiers since March.
North Korea has urged Mexico to free one of its ships detained in Veracruz state in 2014.
It has accused Mexico of illegally holding its Mu Du Bong ship, after it ran aground last year.
Pyonyang blames the United States for making sure the ship is not released.
North Korea said the Mu Du Bong was a legitimate commercial ship and its detention a “rampant violation” of sovereignty.
However, a UN expert says the ship belongs to North Korea’s Ocean Maritime Management, which is on a UN blacklist.
In July 2013 one of North Korea’s ships was seized in Panama after Soviet-era weapons and fighter jets were found hidden under sugar sacks.
United Nations sanctions ban most arms shipments to North Korea.
Under resolutions adopted after Pyongyang’s nuclear tests in 2006 and 2009, the export of all arms and related parts, with the exception of small arms and light weapons, to the communist country is prohibited.
The Mu Du Bong ran aground on a reef off Mexico’s Veracruz state in July 2014. North Korea says it has since paid a bond to cover damage to the reef.
Speaking at a news conference at the UN on April 8, North Korea’s deputy ambassador An Myong Hun said the ship and its crew should be released.
“This ship is totally a peaceful and legitimate commercial ship which sails under the direction of the Ministry of Land and Sea Transportation,” he said.
“The detention of Mu Du Bong is a rampant violation of the dignified sovereignty of the DPRK [North Korea].”
But Hugh Griffiths, co-ordinator of the UN panel that oversees sanctions violations, told journalists that there was “overwhelming” evidence to show the ship was linked to OMM.
A spokesman for Mexico’s UN mission, meanwhile, told AFP news agency his country was “fulfilling our international obligation under Security Council resolutions”.
OMM was blacklisted by the UN in July 2014. The UN said it had played a key role in arranging the shipment of concealed arms found in Panama.
Mexico’s most wanted drug lord, Servando “La Tuta” Gomez, has been captured, Mexican police announced.
Servando Gomez, leader of the Knights Templar drug cartel, was arrested in Morelia in Michoacan state without a shot fired, police officials said.
Previously a school teacher, he became one of Mexico’s most powerful drug lords and took control of Michoacan.
La Tuta Gomez’s capture is a coup for the government of Enrique Pena Nieto in its fight against the drug cartels.
A police spokesman told local media the arrest followed months of intelligence work in the region.
Police reportedly seized nearby properties in the weeks leading up Servando Gomez’s capture and arrested several of his associates.
Known by his nicknames “La Tuta” and “El Profe”, Servando Gomez ruled over much of Michoacan state as head of the Knights Templar cartel.
“El Profe” refers to his career as a teacher, while theories abound about the origins of “La Tuta”.
Servando Gomez evaded capture for years while other senior members of the gang and rival drug lords were captured or killed.
By the time of his arrest, he had a $2 million bounty on his head.
Knights Templar was primarily a drug cartel and it controlled a large part of the lucrative methamphetamine trade in western Mexico.
The cartel was also known for mixing in business and politics in the region and even took effective control over the state’s international port, Lazaro Cardenas, making millions of dollars from illegal mining of iron ore.
A federal government offensive in 2013 saw the Pena Nieto administration wrest back control of Michoacan state from the Knights Templar and rival gangs.
As leader of the biggest cartel in the region, Servando Gomez became the prime target of Enrique Pena Nieto’s crackdown.
The administration has been criticized for failing to tackle the drug gangs, with vigilante groups forming to take on the dealers illegally.
Servando Gomez’s arrest comes just over a year after the capture of Mexico’s most notorious drug lord, Joaquin “Shorty” Guzman, head of the Sinaloa Cartel.
Shortly after Joaquin Guzman’s capture, Mexican security forces killed two of Servando Gomez’s senior deputies, Enrique “Kike” Plancarte and Nazario Moreno, known as “The Craziest One”.
Unlike many rival gang leaders who carefully avoided the limelight, Servando Gomez regularly gave media interviews and railed against the government in Youtube videos.
He began life in the drug trade as an small-time marijuana dealer, before joining a Michoacan gang called La Familia and rising to a senior level. A split in La Familia led him to form Knights Templar.
A father of at least seven, Servando Gomez was also wanted by US authorities in connection with the 2009 murder of 12 Mexican federal police officers.
Multiple protests are being held in cities across Mexico against the disappearance of students in the southern town of Iguala on September 26.
The students had clashed with police during a demonstration and were last seen being bundled into police cars.
Hundreds of local vigilantes have joined the search, saying they would conduct a house-by-house search.
Meanwhile forensic tests are under way on dozens of bodies found in shallow graves near the town last week.
It is feared the bodies could be those of the students.
In Mexico City, family members led a procession, carrying photographs of the disappeared.
Demonstrations also took place in many cities, including Oaxaca, Veracruz, Morelia, and Guerrero.
Forty three missing students who vanished last month after clashing with police in the town of Iguala
A silent march was staged by the EZLN – better known as the Zapatistas indigenous rebel group – in the southern city of San Cristobal de las Casas.
The disappearance and the circumstances surrounding it have caused shock in Mexico.
The students, from a teacher college in Ayotzinapa in Guerrero State, had travelled to nearby Iguala to protest against what they perceived as discriminatory hiring practices for teachers.
After a day of protests, they wanted to make their way back to their college. Accounts of what happened next differ.
Members of the student union say they boarded three local buses, but the police says the students seized the buses.
In the hours that followed, six people were killed when armed men opened fire on the three buses and that of a local football team which they presumably mistook for one carrying students.
Three students, a footballer, the driver of one of the buses and a woman in a taxi were shot dead. Many more were injured.
Municipal police gave chase to the students, and are believed to have fired at them.
Twenty-two officers have been detained in connection with the shooting.
A student who survived the attack said he had seen police taking away his fellow students.
“We blame the state for the forced disappearance of our fellow students,” Omar Garcia told reporters in Mexico City.
Following the incident on the night of September 26, 57 students were reported missing. On September 30 it was announced that 13 of them had returned home.
One name was found to have appeared in the list of the missing twice, leaving 43 students unaccounted for.
On October 4, prosecutors announced they had found six shallow graves containing the remains of at least 28 people.
The bodies are so badly burnt they have not yet not been identified. Forensic experts said it could take days or even weeks to carry out DNA tests.
The reasons why police should have opened fire on the students and what may lie behind their disappearance remain unclear.
A number of different theories have been put forward.
The students all went to a local teacher training college with a history of left-wing activism, but it is not clear whether they were targeted for their political beliefs.
Some think that they may have angered a local drug gang called Guerreros Unidos by refusing to pay extortion money.
Others believe there may be a link between the students’ disappearance and a speech given by the wife of Iguala’s mayor on the day of the clashes.
Maria de los Angeles Pineda Villa was speaking to local dignitaries when the students were protesting in Iguala and some believe they may have been targeted because it was feared they could disrupt the event.
Police are searching for her husband, mayor Jose Luis Abarca Velazquez.
Hurricane Odile will hit the southern end of Mexico’s Baja California peninsula in the coming hours, the US National Hurricane Center says.
Officials described the storm as highly dangerous.
The Mexican authorities have declared a maximum alert for the region and have prepared shelters for up to 30,000 people around the tourist resort of Los Cabos.
US Marines have been placed on standby to help out.
Residents and businesses were preparing as Hurricane Odile raced towards the peninsula.
The Mexican authorities have declared a maximum alert for Baja California as Hurricane Odile will hit the region in the coming hours
The National Hurricane Center said Odile was initially a category 4 hurricane, with winds of up to 135 mph, but it lost some strength and was expected to be a category 3 when it made landfall on Sunday night, September 14.
In the Los Cabos resort, the authorities warned people to stay off the beach, remain indoors and keep away from doors and windows.
Officials said electricity would be shut off in the area as the storm hit to avoid damage from power lines if they came down.
At least 26,000 foreign tourists and 4,000 Mexicans were in the region, local officials said, and those in areas at risk of flooding were being evacuated.
Luis Puente, the head of Mexico’s civil protection agency, told reporters that 164 shelters had been readied with a capacity for 30,000 people.
Storm experts said it was set to be the strongest hurricane to hit the southern tip of the peninsula since Kiko in 1989, which landed as a category 3.
Mexican authorities have issued an environmental alert after hundreds of thousands of fish have been washed up on the shores of Lake Cajititlan in Jalisco over the past week.
Almost 50 tonnes of dead popoche chub freshwater fish have been removed from the lake.
The local authorities said it was part of a “natural cycle” but state officials said it was due to the lake’s “poor management”.
More fish are expected to wash up over the next days.
Jalisco’s secretary for the environment, Maria Magdalena Ruiz Mejia, denied “categorically that this is a natural and cyclical phenomenon”.
Hundreds of thousands of fish have been washed up on the shores of Lake Cajititlan in Jalisco over the past week (photo EPA)
“We have no evidence to support that it is natural and cyclical, to the contrary, we have a series of variables which lead us to believe this phenomenon is not only recurrent and becoming more frequent and severe, but also that it is caused by the poor management of the body of water,” she said.
Maria Magdalena Ruiz Mejia said mud from local wastewater treatment plants could be to blame for the mortality.
When questioned by local journalists whether her office had evidence to support her allegation she said state authorities had been denied access to the plants and could therefore not yet carry out an investigation of the premises.
The state authorities have issued an environmental alert for the lagoon, but said human health was not endangered.
The lake is 5.6 miles long and 1.3 miles wide and is located north of the much bigger Lake Chapala, about 300 miles west of Mexico City.