Biden to talk migration with Mexico's López Obrador, who spent weeks refusing to recognize the president's 2020 victory

  • President Biden will join a “virtual event” with Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador.
  • The two will discuss migration, COVID-19, and economic cooperation, the White House said.
  • López Obrador didn’t recognize Biden’s 2020 victory until mid-December.
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US President Joe Biden will take part in a “virtual event” Monday with his Mexican counterpart, Andrés Manuel López Obrador, a center-left populist who worked closely with the Trump administration to stem migration from Central America.

The March 1 meeting, announced by the White House, comes after López Obrador spent weeks refusing to recognize Biden’s 2020 victory. After his victory was formalized by the Electoral College in mid-December, however, the Mexican head of state sent Biden a letter “to express my recognition of your stance in favor of migrants from Mexico and the rest of the world.”

The two leaders then agreed on a December 19 call to collaborate on a “new approach” to migration from Central America. They also spoke soon after Biden was inaugurated.

According to the White House, Monday’s agenda includes “cooperation on migration,” as well as COVID-19 and “joint development efforts” in the Americas.

Soon after taking office, Biden announced he was ending the “Remain in Mexico” program that forced asylum-seekers to wait out their cases south of the border. He also announced that those subjected to that program would now be eligible to come to the US.

During the previous administration, Mexico closely collaborated with its top trading partner to prevent migrants from reaching the US, deploying thousands of soldiers and setting up police checkpoints across the country to arrest people coming from Honduras and Guatemala.

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