Mexico’s Deputy Health Minister said that there is no plan to seal the borders to contain the spread of the coronavirus, raising apprehension about the effectiveness of the mechanism for controlling the epidemic. Addressing a news conference on April 2, Hugo Lopez-Gatell said there is a lack of empirical evidence to suggest that such methods can help control epidemics.
Mexico has reported over 1,500 confirmed cases of coronavirus so far and 50 deaths due to the infection. Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador also held a press conference on Thursday where he called pandemic a temporary situation but acknowledged that there will be transitory public health and economic crisis.
Last month, AMLO had spoken to US President Donald Trump and thanked him for not shutting down the border amid the coronavirus crisis. He expressed solidarity with the people and government of the United States on behalf of Mexico and proposed accelerating the implementation of a regional trade deal between the United States, Mexico and Canada to boost the economic recovery.
The United States and Mexico, in a joint statement on the initiative to combat the coronavirus pandemic, said that the strong partnership and close cooperation between both countries has allowed them to maintain a productive border environment. It said that they value the health and safety of their citizens and keep that at the forefront of joint decisions made by their respective leaders regarding cross-border operations.
“Recognizing the robust trade relationship between the United States and Mexico, we agree our two countries, in response to the ongoing global and regional health situation, require particular measures both to protect bilateral trade and our countries’ economies and ensure the health of our nations’ citizens,” said both countries.
They agreed to the need for a dedicated joint effort to prevent the spread of the COVID-19 virus and address the economic effects resulting from reduced mobility along our shared border. In order to ensure that essential travel can continue, the United States and Mexico temporarily restricted all non-essential travel across its borders.
(Image Credit: AP)