In reversal, Obama administration seeks to restore financial aid to Mexico
WASHINGTON — The Obama administration wants to restore financial aid to Mexico that it cut last year to protest the country’s human rights record, even though abuses have continued, officials told the Los Angeles Times on Thursday Oct. 6.
Last year, the State Department cut about $5 million in aid to Mexico, part of a broader package allocated under the so-called Merida Initiative that was generally aimed at fighting a drug war.
Overall, the Merida Initiative has provided more than $2 billion in aid to Mexico since 2008. The money has been used to acquire military equipment, train police forces and overhaul the judiciary, which remains a work in progress.
So do efforts to curtail government abuses.
The money was withheld because U.S. officials said Mexico had not lived up to its commitments to investigate egregious atrocities, including the kidnapping and apparent killing of 43 college students by local authorities in September 2014.
The Obama administration’s action sent a strong political message of rebuke to Mexico, a close ally of Washington.