Peruvian President Dina Boluarte. Photo: Google


Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador (AMLO), who was due to turn over the rotating presidency of the Pacific Alliance in November of last year when he was supposed to host the annual summit that he canceled at the last minute, has refused to relinquish the position to the next country in line, Peru.

During his daily press conference on Friday, Feb. 17, which this time was held in Hermosillo, Sonora, Lopez Obrador said that he will not hand over the pro tempore presidency of the regional trade bloc, which is supposed to be rotated every six months.

López Obrador went on to say that he did not want to allow Peru to take the presidency because he considers the administration of President Dina Boluarte, who took over the government after her predecessor Pedro Castillo (a close friend and political ally of AMLO) was ousted for corruption and abuse of power, as “spurious.”

The Pacific Alliance, composed of Chile, Colombia, Mexico and Peru, met in December in Lima, Peru, after AMLO canceled the November summit.

When pressured by journalists as to when he would relinquish the presidency, López Obrador said he would consult with the other member countries on the matter in September, when he is slated to visit South America.

AMLO said on Friday that during that visit he will discuss the matter with the Grupo de Río (Rio Group), a 23-country political bloc founded in 1986 that ceased to exist in 2009 and was replaced two years later by the 33-member Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC).

However, even if AMLO were to meet with the nonexistent Rio Grupo in September and to then surrender the Pacific Alliance presidency, by that time the country that would be due to preside over the organization would be Chile, since the presidency is supposed to be passed every six months based on an alphabetical rotation.

Lopez Obrador has adamantly supported Castillo since he was ousted last December, both refusing to recognize Boluarte as a legitimate president and offering political asylum to the embattled leftist leader, who is now under arrest in Lima.

AMLO’s ambassador to Lima, Pablo Monroy, was declared persona non grata by the Boluarte government in December of last year and expelled from that country for interfering in the internal affairs of Peru.

On Wednesday, Feb. 15, Boluarte demanded that López Obrador surrender the Pacific Alliance presidency, adding that he was “harming the communities that comprise it” by not passing the leadership of the bloc to her government.

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