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López Obrador puts faithful and PRI members in charge of key embassies in Latin America and Europe

2022-01-18T02:12:29.159Z

The president renews 16 positions, of which half lack a diplomatic career path. An activist and a journalist will be the new representatives in Venezuela and Nicaragua. The writer Laura Esquivel will go to Brazil and the historian Agustín Salmerón to Panama



On the left, the writer Laura Esquivel, on the right, the former PRI governor Claudia Pavlovich. EL PAÍS

Related to the president, former PRI leaders and officials. Andrés Manuel López Obrador has put several faithful officials without experience in foreign relations at the head of key embassies in Latin America and Europe. Half of the 16 appointments announced this Monday by the Foreign Ministry lack a diplomatic career path and will be in charge of representing Mexico in countries like Nicaragua, where the writer and journalist Guillermo Zamora will serve as ambassador, or Venezuela, with the left-wing activist Leopold of Gyves. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has announced the list of names that, in the absence of approval in the Senate, will renew diplomatic posts in some key countries in Latin America, the Middle East, as well as in Russia, Portugal or Spain.The writer and former federal deputy Laura Esquivel will be the next ambassador to Brazil, the former PRI governor Claudia Pavlovich will go to the Barcelona Consulate and the historian Pedro Agustín Salmerón will go to Panama. In addition, the Foreign Ministry has announced the public competition, described as "special", for a dozen places.

The appointments embody the wishes of the president in foreign policy, especially in Latin America. Zamora, for example, lands as Mexico's representative in Daniel Ortega's Nicaragua in a tense political context due to his almost null recognition abroad and the frictions that have arisen in the Mexican cabinet. Just a week ago, López Obrador exhibited his differences with the Foreign Ministry when he heard the news that no government official was going to attend Ortega's swearing-in, re-elected for the fourth time in November after imprisoning opposition candidates. The president announced that someone would be sent, publicly disavowing the institution led by secretary Marcelo Ebrard,and offering a boost to Ortega and an election held between accusations of massive fraud and international condemnation.

The new diplomat will return to Nicaragua after his time as a war reporter in the country. In 1985 he was a correspondent during the first years of the Sandinista Revolution and in July 1979 he witnessed the fall of General Anastasio Somoza. During those years, he also recounted the war in El Salvador along with other well-known journalists now related to the president, such as Epigmenio Ibarra. The new ambassador in the country that Ortega governs is the author of books such as

Goebbels vs. Hugo Chávez

(Octavio Antonio Colmenares y Vargas,

2011)

,

where he attacked the ideology of the intellectual Enrique Krauze and compared the criticism against Chávez to that received by Andrés Manuel López Obrador in 2006; and another entitled

El Caso Conasupo: la leche radioactiva (Planeta, 1997),

about one of the most notorious scandals of the PRI, which consisted of the public distribution of milk contaminated with feces to the most popular classes in the nineties. He is coordinator of the Citizen Observatory of Coyoacán, made up of journalists, writers, intellectuals, artists and scientists, from where neoliberalism, violence and insecurity are criticized.

To maintain ties with the Government of Nicolás Maduro, Foreign Affairs has appointed as ambassador in Caracas a social fighter with extensive experience in the south of the country, Oaxaca: Leopoldo de Gyves. In recent years, Mexico has been one of the few countries in the region to try to facilitate an understanding between Chavismo and the opposition during the serious political and economic crisis that Venezuela is suffering. The last dialogue table, installed in Mexico City last summer, was suspended after the extradition to the United States of Alex Saab, alleged figurehead of Maduro.

With a political career of left-wing social activism parallel to that undertaken by López Obrador from Tabasco, Leopoldo de Gyves in the seventies opposed the PRI as the hegemonic party in power; in 1981 he won the municipal presidency of Juchitán, alongside the Unified Socialist Party of Mexico (PSUM). Between 1985 and 1988 he won a seat in the Chamber of Deputies. Later, he joined the PRD and became, in the late 1990s, a local deputy in the Oaxaca Congress. He was also one of the most visible leaders in the movement of teachers opposed to the educational reform of Enrique Peña Nieto (who governed Mexico between 2012 and 2018). And when López Obrador came to power, he expressed his support for the Fourth Transformation. In 2021 he aspired to the candidacy of Morena in Oaxaca, for the elections next June,although the internal process was taken from him by Senator Salomón Jara.

Claudia Pavlovich, consul in Barcelona

Foreign Affairs has also appointed the renowned writer and former federal deputy, Laura Beatriz Esquivel, at the Mexican Embassy in Brazil. And to the former governor of Sonora, from the PRI, Claudia Pavlovich, to the Consulate of Mexico in Barcelona. For diplomatic representation in Russia, the secretariat has announced the philosopher and current coordinator of Historical and Cultural Memory of Mexico, Eduardo Villegas. And Norma Pensado, today Mexico's ambassador to the Russian Federation, to the Mexican Embassy in Denmark. There is still no news, however, about the Spanish government's approval for Quirino Ordaz Coppel, appointed by López Obrador last September, to assume his post as ambassador in Madrid. The Foreign Ministry is awaiting the formalization of the appointment which, sources from the Pedro Sánchez Executive assured EL PAÍS,It's being processed.

Added to the list is Bruno Figueroa, current ambassador to the Republic of Korea, proposed for the embassy in Portugal. Amparo Anguiano, currently general director for Africa, Central Asia and the Middle East, to the Mexican embassy in Romania. The PRI Carlos Miguel Aysa, former governor of Campeche, to the Dominican Republic. And Carlos Peñafiel, current ambassador to the Dominican Republic, to Korea. Marcos Moreno Báez, currently Foreign Commissioner in the Ministry of the Interior, to the Consulate General of Mexico in Nogales, on the border with the United States. María Victoria Romero, current coordinator for the G20, and political issues with European countries from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, to the Azerbaijan office. To the historian Pedro Agustín Salmerón, to the Embassy in Panama. And the current head of the office of the Government Headquarters in Mexico City,Alfonso Suárez del Real, has been appointed as head of the Mexican Liaison Office in Strasbourg, seat of the European Parliament.

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Source: elparis

All news articles on 2022-01-18

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