World

Mexico Won't Pay For Wall, Negotiate NAFTA On Twitter

| by Selena Darlim
The flags of the United States and Mexico share a flagpole.The flags of the United States and Mexico share a flagpole.

On Aug. 28, the Mexican foreign ministry reaffirmed that it will not pay for President Donald Trump's proposed U.S.-Mexico border wall, adding that it will also not carry out any policy negotiations via social media.

"As the Mexican government has always stated, our country will not pay, under any circumstances, for a wall or physical barrier built on U.S. territory along the Mexican border," the Mexico's Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a written statement posted on its Twitter account.

The statement was a direct response to a sweeping series of tweets from Trump on Aug. 27, in which he touched on NAFTA, the border wall, and the Missouri Senate campaign amid updates on Tropical Storm Harvey off the southeast coast of Texas.

According to The Hill, the president began the morning by promoting the book "Cop Under Fire: Moving Beyond Hashtags of Race, Crime and Politics for a Better America," written by Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke, a Trump supporter.

Trump shifted gears to praise the disaster response teams handling the fallout from Harvey, saying that he would be visiting the state "as soon as that trip can be made without causing disruption."
 
"The focus must be life and safety," the president added.

After a brief mention of the Missouri Senate seat, which Trump claimed would be won by a Republican in the 2018 midterm elections from current Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill, and another tweet about the storm, Trump turned his attention to NAFTA and the border wall.

"With Mexico being one of the highest crime Nations in the world, we must have THE WALL. Mexico will pay for it through reimbursement/other," Trump tweeted.

CBS notes that the president has not claimed that Mexico would pay for the wall since the Washington Post released transcripts of his Jan. 27 phone call with Mexico's President Enrique Pena Nieto.
 

"From an economic issue, it is the least important thing we were talking about," The Guardian quotes the president. "...The fact is we are both in a little bit of a political bind, because I have to have Mexico pay for the wall -- I have to."

CBS adds that Trump vowed not to meet with Mexican officials if they did not agree to fund the border wall, because he could not "live with that." During an Aug. 22 rally in Phoenix, Trump threatened to shut down the U.S. government if Congress could not secure funding for the wall's construction. 

The Mexican Foreign Ministry also responded to Trump's assessment of Mexico being "one of the highest crime Nations" in its statement: "The Mexican Government reiterates that [drug trafficking] is a shared problem that will only end if its root causes are addressed: high demand for drugs in the United States and supply from Mexico (and other countries)." 

The statement added: "Only on the basis of the principles of shared responsibility, teamwork and mutual trust will we be able to overcome this challenge."

The president also tweeted about NAFTA, which he previously said he would "end up probably terminating at some point" during the Phoenix rally, The Guardian reports. 

"We are in the NAFTA (worst trade deal ever made) renegotiation process with Mexico & Canada.  Both being very difficult, may have to terminate?" Trump wrote.

"Mexico's position at the negotiation table of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), will continue to be serious and constructive, always putting our national interests first, and seeking a beneficial result whereby the three North American countries win," the Mexican Foreign Ministry said in response.

The ministry went on to say: "Mexico will not negotiate NAFTA nor any other aspect of the bilateral relationship, through social media or any news platform."

The ministry's statement ended with a show of sympathy towards Texas' battle with Hurricane Harvey and an offer to provide assistance with disaster relief "as good neighbors should always do in trying times."

Sources: The Guardian, The Hill, CBSSRE Mexico/Twitter / Featured Image: Ken Bosma/Flickr / Embedded Images: NASA via Wikimedia CommonsSgt. 1st Class Gordon Hyde/US Army via Wikimedia Commons

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