President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said in a Friday news conference that the deterioration of values in American households has caused the drug crisis that claimed 70,000 American lives last year.
“There is a lot of disintegration of families, there is a lot of individualism, there is a lack of love, of brotherhood, of hugs and embraces,” López Obrador said, according to the Associated Press. “That is why they (U.S. officials) should be dedicating funds to address the causes.”
The Mexican president has denied that fentanyl is produced in Mexico and said that people in his country don’t consume the drug, but according to the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA), Mexican transnational criminal organizations are “increasingly producing wholesale quantities of illicit fentanyl pills and smuggling them into the United States.” The DEA said that Mexico’s two largest cartels, the Sinaloa and the New Generation Jalisco, “are likely the primary trafficking groups responsible for smuggling fentanyl into the United States from Mexico.”
In December, Customs and Border Protection caught a train heading into Arizona from Mexico transporting 700,000 fentanyl pills. The DEA reported that 50.6 million fake prescription pills laced with fentanyl and 10,000 pounds of fentanyl powder had been found in the U.S. last year.
López Obrador’s deflection and criticism of the U.S. comes after he threatened to meddle in American elections after Republican politicians called for using the U.S. military to go after Mexico’s powerful drug cartels. Controversy around the issue erupted after four Americans were kidnapped by a cartel in Mexico last week and two of them were murdered.
“Starting today, we are going to initiate an information campaign (aimed at) Mexicans who live and work in the United States, and all Hispanics, to inform them about what we are doing in Mexico and how this initiative from the Republicans, besides being irresponsible, is an offense against the people on Mexico,” López Obrador said at a press conference last week.
“A lack of respect for our independence, for our sovereignty,” he continued. “And if they do not change their attitude and think that they are going to use Mexico for their propagandist, electioneering, and (dirty) political purposes, we are going to call for them not to vote for that party, (due to its being) interventionist, inhumane, hypocritical, and corrupt.”