Mexico Rejects Sanctioning Russia

Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador announced on March 1, 2022 that it will not be imposing sanctions against Russia for its invasion of Ukraine 

In the United Nations, Mexico voted to abstain from condemning Russia for its invasion of Ukraine.

AMLO criticized the censorship of Russian state-affiliated media by social media giants .

“We are not going to take any sort of economic reprisal because we want to have good relations with all the governments in the world,” AMLO said during a news conference. 

AMLO’s stance lies in stark contrast to the heavy-handed sanctions being imposed on Russia by Western countries. 

Russia has strong ties with the so-called “Troika of Tyranny” — Cuba, Nicaragua, and Venezuela. Countries like Argentina and Brazil have also warmed to Russia. However, Mexico and Russia tend to have limited ties due to the United States’ outsized influence on Mexican economic and political affairs. 

On March 1, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken announced he spoke with Mexican Foreing Minister Marcelo Ebrard on the telephone. In the phone call, Blinken claimed that both parties stressed “the worldwide call for the withdrawal of Russia’s troops from Ukraine.”

He tweeted, “Mexico remains an important partner in our work to advance democracy and security. I had a very good call today with Foreign Secretary @m_ebrard, reiterating the worldwide call for the withdrawal of Russia’s troops from Ukraine.”

Ebrard posted a separate tweet in which he stated Mexico’s perspective on the Russo-Ukrainian conflict. He described Mexico’s stance as “friendly”. Ebrard recently condemned the invasion and urged Russia to stop its military invasion of Ukraine. This stood in stark contrast to AMLO’s more moderate call for increased dialogue.

AMLO’s comments on March 1 were in response to a question about Mexico’s interest in Lukoil, Russia’s second-largest oil producer, and Russian airline Aeroflot.

Lukoil revealed on February 25 that it finished off the acquisition of a 50% operator interest in an offshore oil project in Mexico. This is part of Lukoil’s push to expand its global footprint. 

AMLO has also criticized the cancellation of Russian state media such as Russia Today.

“I don’t agree with the fact that media from Russia or any country is censored,” AMLO declared.

According to a report by Reuters, Google prohibited RT and other Russia state-owned outlets from receiving money for ads on their websites, applications, and YouTube videos. This mirrored decisions Facebook took following the Russian invasion of Ukraine. 

Under the leadership of AMLO, Mexico has taken a contrarian path. Following Big Tech’s censorship of Donald Trump, AMLO was one of the few leaders who stood up against Big Tech overreach.

The international landscape is changing and many people are in a state of shock as unexpected geopolitical realignments are coming into being.

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