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MEXICO CITY (AP) – Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador will visit his U.S. counterpart Donald Trump on July 8 and 9 on his first trip abroad since taking office, Mexico’s foreign minister confirmed Tuesday.

The trip has caused controversy among many Mexicans because it comes months before the U.

S. presidential election, and because of Trump’s derogatory comments about Mexican immigrants. Many in the nation recall former President Enrique Peña Nieto’s unfortunate meeting with Trump that some feel propped up the then-presidential candidate prior to the 2016 US election.

Mexico’s foreign secretary, Marcelo Ebrard, tweeted that more details will be released on Wednesday about the visit of López Obrador, who is famous in Mexico for rejecting international travel so far.

The trip was scheduled for July 1, when the Treaty between Mexico, the United States and Canada will enter into force. However, López Obrador will spend July 1 in Mexico celebrating the second anniversary of his victory in the elections of July 1, 2018.

The two leaders have shown a surprisingly cordial relationship despite their ideological differences. Last week, Trump referred to López Obrador as a “great guy. I think he will come to Washington very soon. ” López Obrador has called Trump a friend and has said that his government has shown respect for Mexico.

“The meeting proposed by President López Obrador is aimed at promoting our interests and is not part of internal political processes,” Roberto Velasco Álvarez, the director general for North America of the SRE, tweeted last week.

López Obrador said that he will attend “because we care very much that we can participate in the beginning of this agreement, which I consider historic.”

However, the former Mexican ambassador to the United States, Arturo Sarukhán, described the trip as a colossal political, electoral, diplomatic, and strategic mistake.

López Obrador has carefully avoided conflicts with Mexico’s largest neighbor, even after Trump threatened to impose tariffs on Mexican products imported by the United States unless Mexico did more to curb migrant caravans. Mexico blocked the caravans.

Trump caused annoyance to many Mexicans when, as a 2016 presidential candidate, he said that Mexicans who cross the border bring drugs, crime, and disease to the United States. Back then, critics said Peña Nieto gave him a platform when he invited the two U.S. candidates to Mexico City in 2016, but only Trump accepted. After taking office, Trump kept promising to build a border wall and that Mexico would pay for it.

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The kings visit this Friday La Rioja on the equator of their regional tour

Madrid / Logroño, Jul 10 (EFE) .- The kings will support the wine sector on Friday during the visit they will make to La Rioja, the community with which they arrive at the equator of the regional tour they are conducting after the state of alarm that decreed to deal with the coronavirus pandemic.

In their eighth trip on this tour, Felipe VI and Doña Letizia will star in an agenda that will take them to the municipalities of Haro and Santo Domingo de la Calzada.

Last March, Haro was one of the first towns in Spain to concentrate a high number of coronavirus positives, since a family had attended a funeral in Vitoria where its members were infected.

Later, Santo Domingo de la Calzada was another of the points of La Rioja most affected by COVID-19.

The kings will express their support for the institutions and groups after the work they have had to do to face the consequences of the pandemic and, in an eminently wine-growing community, they will have a special gesture of support for this sector and wine tourism.

Thus, they will visit the enological station of Haro, they will visit a winery and they will meet in another of them with representatives of the sector to learn about the problems caused by the coronavirus.

All these events will be concentrated in the neighborhood of La Estación de Haro, which receives this name because it is where the railway station installed there is located due to the proximity to several of the most important centennial wineries in Rioja and, thus, sent to all Spain part of its production.

In a few meters, next to this station, are some of the headquarters of the firms with the longest tradition in the Rioja Qualified Denomination of Origin.

Both in their meeting with those responsible for the sector and in the rest of their day in La Rioja, Don Felipe and Doña Letizia will be accompanied by the president of the community, Concha Andreu, and the Minister of Industry, Commerce and Tourism, Reyes Maroto.

From Haro, the kings will move to Santo Domingo de la Calzada, where they will travel an urban section of the Camino de Santiago until they reach their cathedral to visit it.

This cathedral is the only one in the world that houses live animals, a rooster and a hen inside, in memory of one of the miracles performed by Santo Domingo, who, according to legend, caused a hen that was already roasted to save to sing. death to an unjustly convicted person.

(c) EFE Agency

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