President Cortizo to López Obrador: ‘Panama is sovereign to decide whether or not to accept the diplomat’

President Laurentino Cortizo came out this Friday, in defense of Foreign Minister Erika Mouynes and assured that Panama is “sovereign to decide whether or not to accept the Mexican diplomat.”

“The president of Mexico has the right to appoint whomever he likes, but Panama is sovereign to decide who he says yes to and who he says no to,” Cortizo said, while assuring that he has had good experiences working with Mexican diplomats from “high professional quality”.

“The decision of the president of Mexico is his decision; we decide whether or not to accept an ambassador, just as they decided to accept ours, that he is a very good ambassador, that is very important”, he added.

“We are respectful not only of Mexico, but of all countries, and we demand respect for Panama. Respect is earned. That is what we demand, both from the president of Mexico and from that of any other country,” he maintained.

His statements come two days after the president of Mexico, Andrés Manuel López Obrador, reported that Pedro Salmerón, whom he had appointed as ambassador of that country in Panama, declined the appointment.

The announcement came after days of harsh questioning of the appointment by Mexican and Panamanian organizations.

López Obrador read the letter sent by Salmerón and expressed his dissatisfaction with what had happened. “As if it were the Holy Inquisition, the chancellor of Panama [Erika Mouynes] he was dissatisfied because they disagreed at ITAM [Instituto Tecnológico Autónomo de México] and he asked us not to send the approval request,” he said.

Immediately afterwards, the Mexican leader announced that he would appoint alternate senator to the position of ambassador in Panama Jessa Rodriguez.

Cortizo offered his statements during a community work tour in the 3-1 circuit, province of Colón, in which he delivered benefits for $5,486,510.

It inaugurated a school in Barrio Norte and the Municipal Sports Center in Cativá, laid the first shovel for the rehabilitation of the Boyd Roosevelt highway from Cativá to Sabanitas and granted benefits from programs of 24 public entities.

These aids are part of the Beehive Plan, which is laying the foundations to reduce poverty and inequality in the entire Panamanian population, reported the State Communication Secretariat.

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