He has railed against what he called Donald Trump’s arrogant, racist and inhumane family separation policy. He has lambasted the “erratic” US president’s “hate campaign” against Latin American migrants. But Mexico’s president-elect, Andrés Manuel López Obrador, struck a more diplomatic tone on Monday, promising to “reach an understanding” with his northern counterpart in a half-hour conversation.

 

Just hours after his historic election victory sent thousands of supporters pouring on to the streets, the 64-year-old leftist that he had received a call from Donald Trump. “I proposed that we explore an integral agreement of development projects, which generate jobs in Mexico and with that reduce migration and improve security. There was respectful treatment and our representatives will speak more.”

 

“We are conscious of the need to maintain good relations with the United States. We have a border of more than 3,000 kilometers, more than 12 million Mexicans live in the United States. It is our main economic-commercial partner,” he said. “We are not going to fight. We are always going to seek for there to be an agreement. … We are going to extend our frank hand to seek a relation of friendship, I repeat, of cooperation with the United States.”

 

Trump was equally tactful, telling reporters: “I think he’s going to try and help us with the border. I think the relationship will be a very good one,” the US president said of the Mexican politician, whose swearing-in will be in December. “We talked about trade, we talked about Nafta, we talked about a separate deal, just Mexico and the United States.”

 

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