Trump Threatens To Close US-Mexico Border Over Migrant "Onslaught"

Washington: US President Donald Trump threatened Thursday to send the military to close its southern border if Mexico fails to stem the "onslaught" of migrants from Central America, in a series of tweets that blamed Democrats ahead of the midterm elections.

The attack comes with Trump's Republicans fighting to retain control of Congress in the November 6 vote, and as thousands of migrants from impoverished Honduras were marching north through Guatemala toward the United States.

"I am watching the Democrat Party led (because they want Open Borders and existing weak laws) assault on our country by Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador, whose leaders are doing little to stop this large flow of people, INCLUDING MANY CRIMINALS," Trump said.

"In addition to stopping all payments to these countries, which seem to have almost no control over their population, I must, in the strongest of terms, ask Mexico to stop this onslaught - and if unable to do so I will call up the U.S. Military and CLOSE OUR SOUTHERN BORDER!"

The tweets came as Secretary of State Mike Pompeo prepared to embark on a tour of the region that will see him visit Mexico ahead of its December inauguration of President-elect Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, as well as Panama.

Trump has made cracking down on illegal immigration and building a wall that stretches the length of the 1,954-mile (3,145 km) border a keystone of his presidency, but his animus toward Mexico had cooled since Obrador's election in July.

Despite their sharp differences, the US and Mexico have made progress on several issues, including the signing of an updated transcontinental trade pact, the US-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA).

But, possibly with an eye on November 6 polls that will determine whether Republicans retain control of Congress, Trump returned to the fiery rhetoric that has marked his past relations with Mexico.

"The assault on our country at our Southern Border, including the Criminal elements and DRUGS pouring in, is far more important to me, as President, than Trade or the USMCA," he said.

Caravan presses on

It was not immediately clear what form of military deployment Trump had in mind. The president announced plans in April to send thousands of National Guard troops to the border, where they could remain until his promised wall is constructed.

At least five US states later refused to send the troops amid an outcry over a policy to separate migrant children from their parents, since discontinued.

Exhausted after tramping in the sun and rain, an advance group of the Honduran migrants on Wednesday took refuge in a church-sponsored shelter in the center of Guatemala City.

Their objective now is to regroup and press on towards the border with Mexico.

A caravan of vehicles carrying more than 2,000 migrants left last Saturday from the northern Honduran city of San Pedro Sula after organizing themselves on social media.

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Cuban Singer Silvio Rodriguez to Attend inauguration of Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador

Renowned Cuban singer/song-writer Silvio Rodriguez says he will attend the swearing-in ceremony of Mexico's President-Elect Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador on December 1st.

Answering a question by a fan on his Segunda Cita blog, Rodriguez said he was invited to the ceremony and that he intended to travel to Mexico to attend.

The Cuban musician has shown his support for Lopez Obrador in the past, and was with him at the Zocalo, Mexico City’s largest square, when López Obrador called to protest against the electoral fraud that declared Felipe Calderon the winner of the 2006 presidential election.

When Lopez Obrador’s landslide victory was imminent on July 1, 2018, Silvio Rodriguez wrote a supportive message: “It seems like the first polls give victory to Andres Manuel. Congratulations to our Mexican brothers and sisters. Great inspiration for the concert. Thanks, Mexico!”

In February 2018, Rodriguez posted a picture of him and the candidate with a quote from Emir Sader’s ‘Latin American Oligarchic Liberalism,’ and declared Lopez Obrador was the only one who could “rescue” the country “from the disgrace brought by the neoliberal governments and the Free Trade Agreement with the United States.”

“They’re afraid of a government that defends the interests of the great majority of Mexican people, defends the national interests of Mexico, and brings Mexico closer to Latin America,” wrote Rodriguez in a post.

“But that’s the hope of most of Mexican people and also Latin America, defeating neoliberalism and subordination to the U.S. to confirm a fair and sovereign Mexico,” he continued.

Edited by Jorge Ruiz Miyares
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AMLO Promised to Create 'Civil Guard' to Combat Violence Instead of Army

Mexican President-elect AMLO announced that the government will create a national “civil guard” to combat violence in the country and curb the army’s role in the civil sphere.

On Saturday, the President-elect of Mexico, Andrés Manuel López Obrador (AMLO) promised the citizens of the country that the military will never be used against civilians while paying tribute to the massacred students during the Oct.2, 1968 protest. He also proposed to reform the army to guarantee peace and prevent tragedies like 1968 mass murder.

RELATED: Ayotzinapa 43: Four Years After The Crime That Shocked Mexico

While giving a speech at Plaza Tlatelolco, AMLO said, "In this historical square we commit ourselves never to use the Army to repress the people of Mexico. We are going to suppress the General Staff and create a civil guard that will limit the use of force and guarantee human rights."

50 years ago, the same Plaza witnessed a macabre event on Oct. 2, 1986, when armed forces fired on a peaceful demonstration by the students, leaving at least 300 unarmed students dead, hundreds injured and more than 1000 detained. The students were protesting against the government of President Diaz Ordaz.

A federal court described the massacre as a genocidal event. A Mexican government institution, the Executive Commission for Victims’ Assistance, admitted for the first time in last week that the 1968 massacre was a state crime. In the recent times, Mexico faced the worst wave of violence with at least 85 people being killed per day on an average.

The army will not be returning to the barracks in the near future as the federal police do not have sufficient resources and that would leave the people vulnerable as argued by AMLO. The new “national civil guard” would be composed of members of the police and two military estates.

The Civil Guard will be created on the national level to unify the different security forces such as the army, navy and Federal Police.

The President-elect, who will assume his role and enter office on Dec.1, said during the rally, "in the investigations of the repression of '68, it appears that the General Staff was used" as a shock force against the students.” The details of the massacre have not yet been fully clarified even five decades later.

Obrador also vowed to support Mexican youth and their education by providing a monthly subsidy for students and creating more free public universities. According to him, unemployment and lack of opportunities ate the reasons that attract the youth towards “criminal activities”.

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Ayotzinapa Parents Condemn Exoneration of Eight Suspects After Filing 'Mistake'

This is part of "the government's strategy to simulate that it is punishing those responsible... which is why we condemn those facts." 

The parents of the 43 disappeared Ayotzinapa students launch a protest, on Thursday, after the judicial system exonerated eight people who were being investigated in relation to the missing pupils. The decision was taken on a technicality regarding how the investigation was filled by the Attorney General's Office.

RELATED: Ayotzinapa 43: Four Years After The Crime That Shocked Mexico

This is part of "the government's strategy to simulate that it is punishing those responsible... which is why we condemn those facts," said the spokesperson for the parents, Meliton Ortega, who is also one of the parents of the 43.

A Judge in the Mexican state of Tamaulipas freed eight people involved in the investigation, by saying that the judicial files were integrated in a wrong way, by the Attorney General's Office (PGR). 

This "mistake" on the filing confirms, for the parents, that the intention of the Federal Government was to "detain them only to liberate them after," as expressed by Ortega, during the march in Iguala, the city where the 43 students disappeared from on September 26, 2014.

Ortega said the relatives will continue to fight for truth, and that their spirits were lifted after Wednesday's meeting with President-elect Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador (AMLO). "By every means possible, we will reach the end, we will arrive at the truth in the investigation and we will continue to demand that it be an investigation that will allow us to clarify the case and see the whereabouts of the students," Ortega said.

The parents of the 43 missing Ayotzinapa students held a meeting with AMLO, who reaffirmed his commitment to establishing a truth commission to investigate the disappearances.

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Peña Nieto Rejects U.S. Blockade against Cuba at UN

President Enrique Peña Nieto has reiterated on Tuesday Mexico''s rejection of the United States'' economic, commercial and financial blockade against Cuba during his speech at the 73rd General Assembly of the United Nations.

In this regard, he assured the end of this policy would bring benefits to the entire region.

Peña Nieto also advocated dialogue as the way to solve the differences between Washington and Havana.

On the first day of the Assembly's general discussion, Ecuador's President Lenin Moreno also called for the lifting of the blockade on Cuba.

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Cuban Oropesa wins 9th International Badminton Tournament in Mexico

Cuban Taymara Oropesa earned the gold medal in the women's individual event of the 9th International Badminton Tournament, which concluded last Sunday in Aguascalientes, Mexico.

Oropesa, runner-up in the Central American and Caribbean Games of Barranquilla, Colombia, last August, won 2-1 (13-21, 21-18 and 21-19) over American Jennie Gai in 48 minutes, according to the official website of the contest.

This was Oropesa´s fifth win in the tournament, in which she earned 2.500 points for the world ranking.

Meanwhile, in the men´s individual single event, the also Cuban Osleni Guerrero had to settle for the bronze medal by losing 1-2 (18-21, 21-14 and 21-18) in the semifinal to Guatemalan Kevin Cordon, first seed of the contest.

Despite the loss, Guerrero won 1.750 units for the universal ranking.

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A Bad Smell Led A Mexican Town's Residents To Discover This Horror

Wherever the trailer went, someone had a problem with it.

As authorities tried to park a large truck in various locations in the suburbs of the Mexican city of Guadalajara, residents began to complain. At first, a local mayor claimed it was parked illegally, prompting authorities to move it.

But then residents near its new location were so perturbed by the stench emanating from it that they, too, demanded that the trailer be sent somewhere else.

It turns out that there was good reason for the strong smell, and for neighbors' anger over the trailer being parked near them: Officials were using the truck as a makeshift morgue, reportedly holding about 100 corpses that couldn't fit anywhere else.

Patricia Jimenez, who lives in one of the areas where the trailer was parked, told Reuters that it "affects our kids, it smells horrible and the longer it stays it's going to stink even worse."

"We have a lot of children in this neighborhood ... it could make us all sick," Jose Luis Tovar, another resident, told the BBC.

So on Monday, authorities moved it yet again, to a warehouse in Guadalajara, Reuters reported.

Local media reports initially put the number of corpses at more than 150, but later reports said it may have been more like 100. Officials have told media outlets that the bodies belong to victims of organized crime and that they didn't have anywhere else to put them.

"We ran out of cemetery plots where we could bury them," said Luis Octavio Cotero, head of the Jalisco Forensics Institute, according to the BBC.

But Tuesday, the Associated Press reported that Jalisco's governor had fired Cotero after complaints about the trailer, accusing him of "indolence and negligence." Cotero insisted he had long warned that the morgue would reach capacity.

About 30,000 homicides were recorded in Mexico last year, and suburbs near Guadalajara, where the trailer has been parked, have experienced a surge of violence. The Guardian reported that in July 2018 alone, Mexico recorded 2,599 homicides - the most to occur in a month since the government started keeping count. Much of the violence is related to drug cartels. Such violence has claimed about 200,000 lives in Mexico in recent years.

Roberto Lopez, the state's general secretary, told Mexican media outlets that he was aware that the use of a trailer as a morgue was disrespectful. But Lopez said there were few other options until a new morgue that is being built is ready to hold the bodies. "When it is built, these bodies will be transferred," he told reporters.

But it could be more than a month until the new morgue is ready, and the wait is not sitting well with residents.

"We don't want it here," Tovar told the BBC, referring to the trailer. "They need to put it somewhere else. It stinks."

Still, state officials are left with few choices when the number of homicides keeps rising.

One inspector for the Jalisco human rights commission told the AP "the physical space to keep the bodies of the dead has been outstripped ... given that every day they are finding bodies in different places, in clandestine graves, shot dead in the street."

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Mexico: Authorities Detain Suspect in Ayotzinapa Case

The Federal Police, who have been accused by relatives of the 43 disappeared students & human rights groups of being involved, detained the suspect.

Mexico’s National Security Commission announced Tuesday the Federal Police detained a suspect in the disappearance of 43 students of a rural school in Ayotzinapa in September 2014.

RELATED: AMLO to Create Truth Commissions for Disappeared People

The man detained is Juan Miguel “N,” a.k.a. “El Pajarraco,” who is believed to have participated in the crime that claimed the lives of the 43 students by transporting the bodies to a dumpster in Coluca, Guerrero.

El Pajarraco faces two detention orders for his links with organized crime, including his alleged participation in the kidnapping of the students.

According to the attorney general’s investigations, the 43 students “were delivered by municipal police of Iguala and Cocula to members of a criminal gang (Guerreros Unidos cartel), who later killed them, incinerated their bodies in a dumpster and discarded the remains near the San Juan River.”

In January 2015 Mexico’s former Attorney General Jesus Murillo claimed the case had been solved despite a series of inconsistencies in the case, which were denounced by the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights and the relatives of the disappeared.

The investigation by the administration of outgoing president Enrique Peña Nieto has been widely criticized as unreliable due to allegations of forced and false confessions given under torture, contradictory testimonies, incompatible hypotheses and evidence tampering.

Until now 29 people have been charged for their alleged involvement in the case of forced disappearance.

Human rights groups and the students’ relatives have demanded a thorough investigation of the army and the federal police’s involvement in the disappearance, and question the feasibility of incinerating the 43 bodies in the Cocula dumpster.

Only one of the student’s body has been identified through genetic analysis.     

President-elect Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, who will assume the office of the presidency in December, said he would reopen the case and establish a national truth commission to investigate all cases of forced disappearances.

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