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Canda, Mexico: Joe Biden makes first calls to foreign leaders

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Biden’s first calls to international leaders went to Canada’s prime minister and Mexico’s president, who says the cash can be for Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala.

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden’s first calls to international leaders went to Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador at a strained second for the U.S. relationship with its North American neighbors.

Mexico’s president stated Saturday that Biden informed him the U.S. would ship $four billion to assist improvement in Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala — nations whose hardships have spawned tides of migration by means of Mexico towards the US.

López Obrador, who spoke Friday with Biden by cellphone, stated the 2 mentioned immigration and the necessity to tackle the basis causes of why folks migrate.

Mexico has stopped current makes an attempt by caravans of Central American migrants to cross Mexico.

Biden’s name to Trudeau, additionally on Friday, got here after the Canadian prime minister this week publicly expressed disappointment over Biden’s choice to situation an govt order halting building of the Keystone XL oil pipeline. The long-disputed challenge was projected to hold some 800,000 barrels of oil a day from the tar sands of Alberta to the Texas Gulf Coast, passing by means of Montana, South Dakota, Nebraska, Kansas and Oklahoma.

Biden informed Trudeau that by issuing the order he was following by means of on a marketing campaign pledge to cease building of the pipeline, a senior Canadian authorities official informed The Related Press. The official spoke on situation of anonymity to debate the personal dialog.

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The White Home stated in an announcement that Biden acknowledged Trudeau’s disappointment together with his Keystone choice.

Biden’s name with López Obrador additionally got here at a tense second — days after the Mexican president accused the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration of fabricating drug trafficking fees in opposition to the nation’s former protection secretary.

Whereas Mexico continues to pledge to dam mass actions of Central American migrants towards the U.S. border, there was no scarcity of potential flashpoints between the 2 nations.

Mexico demanded the return of former Protection Secretary Gen. Salvador Cienfuegos after he was arrested in Los Angeles in October, threatening to limit U.S. brokers in Mexico if he wasn’t returned. U.S. prosecutors agreed to drop fees and return Cienfuegos to Mexico.

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However Mexico handed a regulation proscribing international brokers and eradicating their immunity anyway, and went on to publish the U.S. case file in opposition to Cienfuegos, whom Mexican prosecutors rapidly cleared of any fees.

López Obrador stated in an announcement Friday that the dialog with Biden was “pleasant and respectful.”

The White Home stated Biden talked about “reversing the earlier administration’s draconian immigration insurance policies.”

Trudeau informed reporters earlier than the decision on Friday that he wouldn’t permit his variations with Biden over the challenge to turn out to be a supply of pressure within the U.S.-Canada relationship.

“It’s not all the time going to be excellent alignment with the US,” Trudeau stated. “That’s the case with any given president, however we’re in a scenario the place we’re far more aligned on values and focus. I’m very a lot wanting ahead to working with President Biden.”

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Biden signed the manager order to halt building of the pipeline simply hours after he was sworn in.

“Leaving the Keystone XL pipeline allow in place wouldn’t be in line with my Administration’s financial and local weather imperatives,” Biden’s govt order stated.

Critics say the rising operations enhance greenhouse gasoline emissions and threaten Alberta’s rivers and forests. On the U.S. facet, environmentalists expressed issues concerning the pipeline— it might cross the Ogallala Aquifer, one of many world’s largest underground deposits of recent water — being too dangerous.

However proponents of the challenge say it might create hundreds of jobs on each side of the border.

The challenge was proposed in 2008, and the pipeline has turn out to be emblematic of the tensions between financial improvement and curbing the fossil gas emissions which might be inflicting local weather change. The Obama administration rejected it, however President Donald Trump revived it and was a powerful supporter. Development already began.

Biden and Trudeau additionally mentioned the prospects of Canada being provided with the COVID-19 vaccine from pharmaceutical big Pfizer’s facility in Kalamazoo, Michigan, based on a second senior Canadian authorities official, who spoke on the situation of anonymity to explain a non-public dialog.

Canada has been getting all its Pfizer doses from a Pfizer facility in Puurs, Belgium, however Pfizer has knowledgeable Canada it gained’t get any doses subsequent week and can get 50% lower than anticipated over the following three weeks. Ontario Premier Doug Ford has publicly requested Biden to share one million doses made at Pfizer’s Michigan facility.

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The U.S. federal authorities has an settlement with Pfizer wherein the primary 100 million doses of the vaccine produced within the U.S. will likely be owned by the U.S. authorities and will likely be distributed within the U.S. Anita Anand, the Canadian federal procurement minister, has stated the doses which might be rising from the Michigan plant are for distribution in the US.

The 2 leaders additionally spoke broadly about commerce, protection and local weather points. Trudeau additionally raised the circumstances of two Canadians imprisoned in China in obvious retaliation for the arrest of a high Huawei govt, who was apprehended in Canada on a U.S. extradition request, based on the prime minister’s workplace.

Gillies reported from Toronto and Stevenson from Mexico Metropolis.

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