Mexico president cancels Trump talks in US wall row

Earlier, Trump had challenged Pena Nieto to cancel his visit, after the Mexican leader denounced the US president's decision to move ahead with the wall along the US-Mexico border.

Photo by: AFP (Archive)
Photo by: AFP (Archive)

Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto faced severe criticism from politicians and citizens in response to his overture to Donald Trump which resulted in the latter's visit on August 31, 2016 to Mexico.

Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto on Thursday called off a meeting with Donald Trump due to a dispute over the US leader's vow to make Mexico fund a new wall on the countries' border.

"We informed the White House this morning that I will not attend the working meeting scheduled for next Tuesday" with Trump in Washington, the Mexican leader said on Twitter.

"Mexico reiterates its willingness to work with the United States to reach agreements in both nations' interests."

Trump later said Thursday that talks with his Mexican counterpart would have been "fruitless" if Mexico is unwilling to pay for a wall along the countries' common border.

"The president of Mexico and myself have agreed to cancel our planned meeting scheduled for next week," Trump told Republican lawmakers at a retreat in Philadelphia.

"Unless Mexico is going to treat the United States fairly with respect, such a meeting would be fruitless, and I want to go a different route. I have no choice."

TRT World's Harry Horton gives more details.

White House spokesperson Sean Spicer had said in a statement that the US is looking to reschedule the meeting between the Mexican president and Trump.

He added that the US "will keep the lines of communication open with Mexico."

Earlier during the day, Trump challenged Pena Nieto to cancel his visit, after the Mexican leader denounced his decision to move ahead with the wall.

Trump on Wednesday signed an order to build a border wall to keep out illegal migrants whom he blames for crime -- a controversial key pledge of his election campaign.

Pena Nieto later condemned Trump's decision to order construction of a border wall.

TRTWorld and agencies