LeBaron family members meet with AMLO in Mexico City

Family members of the nine American Mormon women and children killed in northern Mexico last month emerged from a meeting with the country’s president Monday saying they wanted to work with the government, not against it.

“With this meeting, we showed that we are not enemies of the authorities,” Julian LeBaron, a family spokesman, told reporters after the session at the national palace here in the capital. “We want to help the authorities, but we will also be demanding of them.”

The meeting between the LeBaron clan, dual U.S.-Mexican citizens who have lived in northern Mexico for generations, and President Andrés Manuel López Obrador was a sign of the geopolitical import the killings of the three women and six children have taken on.

The killings outside the town of La Mora in the state of Sonora on Nov. 4 have drawn the attention of the White House to rising violence in Mexico. President Trump said last week his administration planned to designate drug cartels as foreign terrorist organizations.

López Obrador and others here oppose that move, which could affect the country’s vital tourism industry, lead to sanctions on legitimate banks and businesses, and, some say, allow unilateral U.S. intervention in Mexico. Attorney General William P. Barr is expected to visit Mexico City this week to discuss Trump’s plan.

The breakaway Mormon community now finds itself at the center of the dispute, pushing for government action in the wake of the killings while also trying not to alienate López Obrador.

Julian LeBaron, a member of the family that lost nine members in an ambush in the northern state of Sonora last month, arrives at Mexico’s National Palace Monday for a meeting with President Andrés Manuel López Obrador. (Pedro Pardo/AFP via Getty Images)
Julian LeBaron, a member of the family that lost nine members in an ambush in the northern state of Sonora last month, arrives at Mexico’s National Palace Monday for a meeting with President Andrés Manuel López Obrador. (Pedro Pardo/AFP via Getty Images)

Family members led a mass protest in Mexico City on Sunday to demand more action from Mexico’s government to confront the problem of violence. It was the first anniversary of López Obrador’s inauguration.

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Source: THE WASHINGTON POST



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