- Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador is absolutely oblivious to the coronavirus menace.
- AMLO regularly greets revelers with hugs during his rallies.
- No stringent measures have been enacted to contain the epidemic in Mexico.
Mexico is the United States’ next-door neighbor. Of course, one would expect that the rising number of casualties on the other side of the border would spur the Mexican government into enacting a slew of stringent statutory safeguards to limit the spread of coronavirus. But this is not what’s happening.
The government, led by Andrés Manuel López Obrador, is opting to paper over the severity of the situation. Just two weeks ago, the president publicly dismissed the malady as an exaggerated ruse. While governments across the world are doing their best to warn the citizenry against congregating in crowds and contact, AMLO is urging the general public to shake hands and hug.
During a recent rally, he told the crowd that his adversaries were praying for everyone to get infected so he can be blamed for it. The following were his exact words in relation to this:
“There are those who say we should stop hugging because of coronavirus. But we should hug. Nothing’s going to happen. They want us to get infected. That’s what they want so they can blame me for everything.”
He said that the epidemic and other unfortunate events going on in the region wouldn’t affect the Mexican people. The president seems utterly oblivious to the impending catastrophe, and regularly greets revelers with hugs during his rallies.
The Mexican government has not made any drastic moves to curb the spread of the virus even though the country has about 100 confirmed cases. Its borders are open, and travel is unrestricted. Last Sunday, over 40,000 people attended the Vive Latino music event held in Mexico City.
Several basic precautionary measures have, however, been implemented. They include the closure of schools and suspension of the country’s soccer league.
Trump Administration Closes U.S.–Mexico Border
The Trump administration is limiting non-essential travel at the U.S.–Mexican border. Thousands of people cross the U.S.–Mexico border every day to attend school, go to work, and to receive medical treatment. Travel related to these activities is currently classified as essential travel.
The news comes after two days of meetings between diplomats from both sides. The following is a statement provided by Mexican Foreign Secretary Marcelo Ebrard regarding this.
“What has been achieved is that the measures for reducing the risk of propagation of the virus will not affect the substantive economy activities of Mexico and the United States and of the border region.”
The United States is working to contain the illness, which has infected over 15,000 people and led to the death of over 200. The State Department has additionally issued a Level 4 advisory asking citizens to avoid travel to other countries. The agency has also called upon those residing in foreign nations to return unless they intend to stay there for an indefinite amount of time.