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Monday, June 3, 2024


Mexico Elects First Woman President: Claudia Sheinbaum

A terrific source for daily international news comes from the Council on Foreign Relations. The 103 year old effort produces a Daily News Brief of current news, often with an analysis. The Daily News Brief is keen to list sources and contributors of its news recaps. 

CLICK HERE to see more CFR Daily Brief.

The Council on Foreign Relations is an American think tank specializing in U.S. foreign policy and international relations. Founded in 1921, it is an independent and nonpartisan nonprofit organization. CFR is based in New York City, with an additional office in Washington, D.C. 

 Current CFR president is Michael B. Froman. Founders: David Rockefeller, Herbert Hoover, Allen Dulles, Walter Lippmann and others. 

 Froman—a widely respected leader across government, business, and the nonprofit sector—became the organization’s fifteenth president. He succeeded Richard Haass, CFR’s president since 2003, who stepped down in June 2023. 

 As an example of its daily news and analysis the column for June 3, 2024 is offered in this post:

Daily News Brief 

June 3, 2024 

 Top of the Agenda 

Mexico Elects First Woman President in Sweeping Victory for Governing Party 

Former Mexico City Mayor and climate scientist Claudia Sheinbaum won the country’s presidential election yesterday and will become (NYT) the first woman and first Jewish person to lead Mexico. 

Preliminary results suggest she won by more than thirty points, while the ruling Morena party is also expected to hold large majorities in both houses of Congress. 

Sheinbaum pledged to continue (FT) the policies of incumbent president and close ally Andrés Manuel López Obrador to uplift Mexico’s poor but also said she would “respect business freedom” and attract “private national and foreign investment.” 

 López Obrador’s tenure was marked by tensions over high levels of crime, rising migration, government efforts to increase control over the energy sector, and water stress. López Obrador also announced ambitions to weaken independent regulators, efforts that could be empowered if Morena and allies hold a congressional supermajority when all votes are fully counted. 

 Analysis “The coming change in administration in Mexico—and the possible return of Trump in the United States—will present an opportunity to reset relations between the two countries. For its own security and prosperity, the United States should seek to boost economic ties with Mexico by enforcing free trade rules and insisting on the fair and equal treatment of businesses,” CFR expert Shannon O’Neil writes for Foreign Affairs. 

 “The first and foremost and perhaps only major issue that affects every Mexican [is] public safety and security,” the Mexican Council on Foreign Relations’ Andrés Rozental told The President’s Inbox. “That issue has not been, in my view, well addressed by any of the candidates in the sense that they are very good at the diagnostic, but they are very poor in terms of details of how they would address it, the issue and how they would pay for it.”   


Pacific Rim South Korea to Suspend Military Pact With North Korea Over Trash-Filled Balloons 

Seoul will halt (Yonhap) a 2018 deal aimed at reducing tensions between the countries, the South Korean presidency said today. North Korea has sent almost one thousand trash-filled balloons across the border since Thursday in what it called retaliation for South Korean activists’ balloons that dropped leaflets criticizing Pyongyang. 



Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy invited (Nikkei) Asian leaders to participate in a peace conference this month in Switzerland while speaking at the Shangri-La Dialogue in Singapore yesterday. 

He said that China and Russia are trying to pressure other countries not to attend. In this Expert Brief, CFR Fellow Thomas Graham outlines what Russian President Vladimir Putin really wants in Ukraine.   


 South and Central Asia Heat Stress Kills Thirty-Three Poll Workers in Indian Election The deaths in the state of Uttar Pradesh were reported (CNN) Saturday by the state’s lead election officer, who said their families would receive eighteen thousand dollars each in compensation. Extreme heat has killed at least seventy-seven people across the country in the past ten days, officials said. Results of the election are expected tomorrow. 

 Tajikistan/EU: Envoys from the European Union (EU) concluded a high-level visit to Tajikistan Friday to discuss plans for EU investments in the Trans-Caspian Transport Corridor between Europe and Central Asia. Brussels pledged earlier this year to invest more than ten billion dollars in infrastructure in Central Asia. 

Middle East and North Africa Israel’s War Cabinet Meets to Discuss New Potential Cease-Fire Deal The war cabinet met last night (Times of Israel) to discuss a potential cease-fire deal with Hamas that U.S. President Joe Biden outlined in a speech on Friday. U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken said the onus is on Hamas to accept the deal; Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s top foreign policy advisor told the Sunday Times that the Israeli government agreed to the deal, though two far-right ministers in the governing coalition threatened to dissolve the government over its terms. 

Oil: CFR Fellow Steven A. Cook reports Washington’s track record of ill-fated ambitions in the Middle East. Saudi Arabia: The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and partner exporters, a group known as OPEC+, agreed (NYT) to extend deep oil production cuts into 2025 to prop up prices. Their deal reached yesterday in Riyadh permits output from eight countries to gradually increase beginning in October. The production cuts are in part (WSJ) due to concern about a global surplus as non-OPEC producers such as the United States contribute more oil to global markets.   

 Sub-Saharan Africa South Africa’s ANC Rejects Calls for Ramaphosa’s Departure Following Election President Cyril Ramaphosa does not plan (Africanews, AP) to resign as chair of the ruling African National Congress (ANC) after the party’s loss of a congressional majority, the ANC secretary-general said yesterday. The country is headed for talks to determine the makeup of the government. 

South Africa’s president is decided by the Parliament after national elections. Nigeria: Two unions began a nationwide strike (AFP) today that closed schools and government offices after talks with the government failed to reach an agreement on a new minimum wage. The strike also resulted (Premium Times) in a temporary shutdown of the country’s power grid in the early hours of the morning, though electricity has since been restored.   

Europe Free Trade: China-Russia Gas Pipeline Deal Stalls After Disputes Over Price, Supply Levels Plans to conclude a deal on the Power of Siberia 2 gas pipeline have stalled, unnamed sources familiar with the negotiations told the Financial Times. China had asked for prices that were close to the highly subsidized levels paid in Russia and said it committed to buying only a small part of the pipeline’s annual output, the sources added. A Kremlin spokesperson said today that the two sides were still in discussions, and China did not immediately comment. 

Georgia: A bill regarding foreign-funded activities that sparked mass protests in Georgia became law (RFE/RL) today after Georgia’s parliamentary speaker signed it. The legislature overrode a veto on the bill by President Salome Zurabichvili. 

 Americas Canadian Defense Minister Warns Chinese Counterpart About Election Meddling Concerns Bill Blair voiced concerns about interference in elections at a rare meeting with his Chinese counterpart in Singapore, he told Reuters over the weekend. Canada’s domestic spy agency said in April that China interfered in the country’s last two elections, which Beijing has denied.   

 United States Puerto Rico Governor Loses Primary Election to Challenger in Upset Governor Pedro Pierluisi’s reelection bid effectively ended (NBC) yesterday when he lost a primary vote to Jenniffer González-Colón, the island’s resident commissioner and nonvoting member of the U.S. Congress. Puerto Rico’s governing New Progressive Party, which favors statehood, includes Democrats such as Pierluisi and Republicans such as González. 

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