Mexico at its best
MEXICO CITY – The full Senate unanimously approved the motion to request that the federal government open its borders to greatest possible number of Syrian refugees who are fleeing the humanitarian crisis taking place in the middle eastern country.
The senators asked the Foreign Relations Secretariat to call on the United Nations Organization to convene an urgent and special session so that all member countries contribute to solutions to the migration crisis that Europe is suffering.
The Board of Directors of the Senate Secretary Martha Palafox Gutiérrez, Labor Party senator, read the petition that the senate sent to President Enrique Peña Nieto’s government so that the Mexican borders would be opened to give asylum to the Syrian refugees.
This is very much in the tradition of Mexican diplomacy and foreign policy. While even during the Porfiriate “unwanted” foreigners were welcome in Mexico (African-Americans displaced by Jim Crow, the Chinese after the US Chinese Exclusion Act of 1883, etc.) post-revolutionary Mexico made offers of political refuge an integral part of foreign policy. Calles, despite his approval of Hitler’s economic development plans in Germany, made sure he was quoted in the German press as saying ANY PERSON (regardless of ethnicity or religion) was welcome to emigrate to Mexico if they needed to. Cardenas famously offered refuge to the Spanish Republicans (and Leon Trotsky, along with both White Russians and Bolsheveks); Mexican diplomats in the late 30s up until Mexico’s entry in the war (and even after where they could) gave Mexican visas to anyone needing to get out of Europe (more European Jews were given asylum in Mexico than in the rest of the Allied countries combined); and we accepted both US dissidents (Communists in the 50s, draft evaders in the 60s) and South Americans in the post-war era. Other than the Central Americans (and that as much due to US pressure on the recent pro-US administrations here), this is very much the tradition.