HAMBURG, Germany – US President Donald Trump said on Friday he still intended for Mexico to pay for his campaign pledge of a border wall between the two North American neighbors, shortly before meeting with his Mexican counterpart.
Trump and Enrique Peña Nieto were posing for the cameras during the ongoing G20 Summit – a meeting of the world’s major economies held in Hamburg (northern Germany) – when a correspondent asked the former if he still wanted Mexico to pay for the wall, according to pool reports.
“Absolutely,” was Trump’s succinct reply.
The bilateral meeting, which began more than an hour late because of the time taken by the summit debates, came more than five months after Peña Nieto canceled a visit to the White House to meet with Trump as a result of tensions about the wall and the US president’s insistence that America’s southern neighbor would have to pay for it.
Before the meeting, the two presidents each made a brief statement to the cameras and Trump noted the “successful day” he’d had up to then.
“We’re negotiating NAFTA and some other things with Mexico, and we’ll see how it all turns out, but I think we’ve made very good progress,” he said.
Peña Nieto, for his part, spoke in favor of maintaining a “flowing dialogue’ and cooperating in certain areas for “the security of both nations, especially for our borders.”
He also said that immigration is a matter that concerns both governments and noted the need for the two parties to take responsibility in the fight against organized crime.
Trump was accompanied at the meeting by, among others, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross and National Security Advisor H.R. McMaster.