On Wednesday, Feb. 23, Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador accused US Secretary of State Antony Blinken of “interfering” after he called for greater accountability over a string of journalist murders.
The rare public spat with US President Joe Biden’s administration follows the killing of at least five media workers already in 2022 in one of the world’s most dangerous countries for reporters.
“The high number of journalists killed in Mexico this year and the ongoing threats they face are concerning,” Blinken tweeted late Tuesday.
“I join those calling for greater accountability and protections for Mexican journalists. My heart goes out to the loved ones of those who gave their lives for the truth,” he added.
In response, Lopez Obrador urged Blinken “to inform yourself and not to act in an interfering manner because Mexico is not a colony of the United States, nor is it a protectorate.”
He told reporters he thought Blinken was “misinformed because otherwise, he would be acting in bad faith,” and insisted that the Mexican government was dealing with crimes against journalists.
“In all cases, action is being taken. There is no impunity,” Lopez Obrador said, adding that he had asked his foreign minister to send Blinken details of all the cases and the government’s actions.
The country’s foreign minister then shared a letter on Twitter addressed to his US counterpart in which he detailed the investigations into these crimes while stressing his government could only hold accountable “Mexican citizens and Mexican institutions.”