World Mexico holds referendum on whether to probe ex-presidents
Mexico gets a historic win over France in 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games debut
Mexico got an incredible 4-1 win over France in a great start to their Olympic tournament.Mexico started the match with the team coming out with red shorts, something unusual that reminded many of their opening match against Saudi Arabia in the 1999 Confederations Cup, something that many people would have on their mind later. Mexico had an opportunity a minute in when a free kick had Sebastian Cordova getting a cross into the area, but Cesar Montes’ header went wide. Mexico had a scare when a cross was sent into the area but Andre-Pierre Gignac was called offside. France had a chance after Mexico lost a ball but Teji Savanier’s shot went well wide.
By Diego Oré
MEXICO CITY, August 1 (Reuters) - Mexicans on Sunday are set to vote on whether to investigate five of the country's former leaders in a referendum championed by President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, amid criticism that the move is a political stunt and turnout could be low.
Lopez Obrador has cast past administrations as deeply corrupt and made combating graft his top priority. But critics say he hopes to use the consultation to energize his base, and that it is unlikely to muster enough votes to be valid.
Mexico brought back down to earth in Olympic loss to Japan, but soccer medal chase still on
Mexico got a dose of reality after the high of beating France in its men's Olympic opener. A loss to Japan leaves several takeaways that should serve the team well for the rest of the Tokyo Olympics.Japan punched Mexico in the mouth early (scoring two goals in 12 minutes) while the latter took a couple of bad hits — namely, an injury to the starting left back (Erick Aguirre) and a red card to the starting center back (Johan Vasquez).But the Mexicans staggered back, rediscovered their footing and delivered the final blows, leaving them with an overall optimistic vibe for what’s ahead.
At least 40% of registered Mexican voters, or some 37 million people, would need to vote for the results to be binding. Analysts have said they doubt the turnout, which was slightly above 50% in June midterm elections, will be sufficient.
Lopez Obrador has blamed the former leaders - Carlos Salinas, Ernesto Zedillo, Vicente Fox, Felipe Calderon and Enrique Peña Nieto, whose administrations spanned 1988 to 2018 - for aggravating many of Mexico's woes, from poverty to insecurity.
Despite widespread criticism among Mexicans of how each leader ran the country, polls show the referendum has generated little nationwide interest and most people who will vote are expected to back the proposal of the leftist president.
"The consultation has became ideological," said Roy Campos, a pollster at Consulta Mitofsky. "The president's supporters are the ones who want to go and vote, and vote yes."
Opinion: I've been raped, beaten and held under house arrest for fighting for my Sahrawi people
Sultana Sidibrahim Khaya writes that she will not allow violence against her and her family to silence her campaign for self-determination in Western Sahara. "However, in order to secure justice for me and the Sahrawi people, I also need help from the US."As an outspoken advocate for self-determination in Western Sahara, I have long been a target for the occupying Moroccan government. I have been beaten, tortured, and abducted by Moroccan police while engaged in peaceful protests; after a particularly violent assault in 2007, I lost my right eye.
According to a recent survey by newspaper El Financiero, 77% of respondents said they would back the proposal to investigate former leaders, but only 31% of people said they would vote.
The statute of limitations has expired for some charges that the ex-presidents could potentially face, and the referendum could lead to the creation of a truth commission rather than legal action, Campos said.
Fox, who was president from 2000 to 2006 and is a vocal critic of Lopez Obrador, has urged Mexicans to stay home.
"Let's not indulge in this farce," he wrote on Twitter.
The referendum asks voters to reject or back "a process of investigation of political decisions taken in past years by political actors" that would be aimed at "guaranteeing justice and the rights of possible victims."
Lopez Obrador's administration has not detailed what that process would entail.
Lopez Obrador originally wanted the referendum to ask voters if they wanted the ex-presidents to be prosecuted, but the Supreme Court ordered a looser formulation to protect due process and the presumption of innocence.
Some analysts say Lopez Obrador is focusing on his predecessors to distract from problems on his watch, including economic malaise, record murders and the coronavirus pandemic.
"The intent is to ... place those presidents on the villains' side of history," Campos said.
As well, Lopez Obrador is likely looking to rally his supporters ahead of another referendum in March, when he will hold a vote on whether to end his presidency halfway into a six-year term.
"It will let him justify a way of mobilizing his base," said Antonio Ocaranza, director of OCA Reputacion consultancy.
(Reporting by Diego Ore; Writing by Drazen Jorgic; Editing by Daina Beth Solomon and Richard Chang)
Mexico sues US gun manufacturers over arms trafficking toll .
MEXICO CITY (AP) — The Mexican government sued United States gun manufacturers and distributors Wednesday in U.S. federal court, arguing that their negligent and illegal commercial practices have unleashed tremendous bloodshed in Mexico. The unusual lawsuit was filed in U.S. federal court in Boston. Among those being sued are some of the biggest names in guns, including: Smith & Wesson Brands, Inc.; Barrett Firearms Manufacturing, Inc.; Beretta U.S.A. Corp.; Colt’s Manufacturing Company LLC, and Glock Inc. Another defendant is Interstate Arms, a Boston-area wholesaler that sells guns from all but one of the named manufacturers to dealers around the U.S.