Mexican far-left President Andrés Manuel López Obrador held his first-ever assembly in particular person with Chinese dictator Xi Jinping on Thursday, reaffirming their nations’ “friendly relations” and agreeing to fight fentanyl trafficking.
The Mexican president informed that, throughout the assembly, López Obrador invited Xi to go to Mexico “in the coming months.” Xi’s go to to Mexico will reportedly be centered across the Mexican authorities’s lithium and renewable vitality challenge often known as Plan Sonora, and the Interoceanic Corridor of the Isthmus of Tehuantepec (CIIT), a challenge that seeks to join the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans by means of a railway system.
Mexico, which nationalized its lithium business final yr, ranks because the tenth-richest nation in lithium reserves, estimated at 1.7 million tonnes. China is the world’s largest lithium consumer, an indispensable materials used within the manufacturing of electrical automobile batteries and batteries utilized in digital gadgets similar to cellphones, laptops, and tablets.
According to China’s state-run Xinhua information company, Xi made calls for increasing China’s cooperation with Mexico in finance, electrical automobiles, and different rising industries, including that each nations “that the two sides should make good use of the intergovernmental cooperation mechanism and deepen cooperation in traditional areas such as infrastructure construction.”
“In these more than five years since the inauguration of Mr. President [López Obrador], he has led the Mexican government and people to advance in reforms and innovations, achieving important results in the process of national development, for which I would like to congratulate him,” Xi said throughout the assembly in accordance to the Chinese embassy in Mexico.
“The friendship between China and Mexico, reaching the winds and rains, has been strengthening over time. Last year we solemnly celebrated the 50th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between the two countries, and this year we mark the 10th anniversary of the establishment of the China-Mexico comprehensive strategic partnership,” López Obrador said. “I attach great importance to the development of binational relations and am ready to work with you to continue the half-century-old traditional friendship and take the relations between the two countries to a new level.”
The encounter – which occurred on the sidelines of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit held in San Francisco, California, this week – concluded with López Obrador saying that he and Xi had dedicated “to continue maintaining good relations for the benefit of our people.”
Mexican Foreign Minister Alicia Bárcena stated that the 2 leaders agreed to assist households affected by Hurricane Otis, a Category 5 hurricane that induced widespread destruction in Acapulco. Bárcena additionally stated that each Xi and López Obrador agreed to fight unlawful trafficking of artificial drug precursor chemical compounds and to enhance commerce and funding between each nations.
China is the primary provider of important precursor chemical compounds for fentanyl, largely produced by Mexican drug cartels and smuggled into America.
Fentanyl is a extremely harmful and addictive artificial opioid that’s 50 instances stronger than heroin and 100 instances stronger than morphine. While fentanyl has pharmaceutical makes use of within the remedy of very particular extreme ache cases, similar to continual ache attributable to most cancers, illegally manufactured fentanyl and fentanyl-laced medicine have led to a rising variety of drug overdose deaths within the United States.
Under the Biden Administration, the United States has seen the smuggling of fentanyl by means of the U.S-Mexico border dramatically improve to up to 4 instances greater than what it was in 2020. Deaths from drug overdoses, particularly fentanyl-related instances, elevated by 15 p.c throughout 2021. The metropolis of San Francisco — the place López Obrador and Xi’s encounter came about — registered extra drug overdose deaths in August 2023 than in any prior month since 2020, when town began conserving information of overdose deaths.
Last yr, in an unique interview with Breitbart News Daily, Mark Lamb, the sheriff of Pinal County, Arizona, stated that China is supplying Mexican cartels with the important substances used to produce fentanyl, which is then smuggled into the United States.
“Centuries ago, there were the Opium Wars that literally almost brought a dynasty to its knees, and I think that China is now exacting that same fate on the West [and] on America,” Lamb said. “They’re bringing in the majority of the precursors that it takes to create the fentanyl. They give it to the cartels in Mexico, and then Mexico is producing the product that they’re transporting into Arizona and into America.”
In April, López Obrador despatched a letter to Xi asking the Chinese dictator’s assist to management fentanyl imports to Mexico whereas on the identical time criticizing U.S. Republican legislators who demanded stronger measures to curb the circulate of fentanyl from the U.S.-Mexico border.
In April’s letter, López Obrador denied Mexico’s involvement within the manufacturing of fentanyl, regardless of proof offered by legislation enforcement businesses and stories indicating that Mexican drug cartels are manufacturing fentanyl in clandestine laboratories utilizing Chinese provides.
Shortly afterward, the Chinese authorities echoed Mexico’s statements, claiming that there isn’t any unlawful fentanyl commerce between each nations.
Christian Okay. Caruzo is a Venezuelan author and paperwork life below socialism. You can observe him on Twitter here.