Mexico's President scraps meeting with Trump after executive order to build wall

Thursday, January 26, 2017 - 09:30

Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto has scrapped an upcoming meeting with President Donald Trump in the wake of a fiery back-and-forth over which nation will pay for a border wall between the two nations.

"This morning we informed the White House that I will not attend the business meeting scheduled for next Tuesday with the @POTUS," Nieto tweeted.

Trump tweeted earlier Thursday that if Mexico refused to pay for the wall it might be best to scrap their upcoming meeting.

"The U.S. has a 60 billion dollar trade deficit with Mexico. It has been a one-sided deal from the beginning of NAFTA with massive numbers...," Trump tweeted. "If Mexico is unwilling to pay for the badly needed wall, then it would be better to cancel the upcoming meeting."

The deep divide over which country will fund Trump's promised wall along the U.S.-Mexican border — along with the White House's pledge to withhold federal funding from so-called "sanctuary cities" — has added tension to the relationship between the two countries.

Former Mexican President Vicente Fox in a video posted on Twitter implored Trump to rethink his position.

"Paisanos, @realDonaldTrump's reaction is one of fear," Fox wrote. "He's seen that México stands together and it's strong. Don't mess with us!"

A day earlier Trump, as he was unveiling his executive orders for ramped up immigration arrests and deportation and the border wall, threw in some praise for Mexico and Mexicans and declaring that the crisis on the border was due to a surge in Central Americans. During the presidential campaign, Trump's inflammatory rhetoric included calling Mexican immigrants "rapists" and accusing them of "bringing crime."