News

    Immigration Tops Agenda at North American Summit

    President Bush is in New Orleans, playing host to his North American counterparts, Mexican President Felipe Calderon and Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper. As VOA's Greg Flakus reports from New Orleans, immigration was a top issue with President Calderon.

    President Bush accompanied President Calderon to the opening of Mexico's newest consulate here in New Orleans. The previous consulate located here had been Mexico's oldest one, opened in 1822, shortly after the country gained independence from Spain. It was closed in 2002, but thousands of Mexican laborers have come to New Orleans since the city was devastated by Hurricane Katrina in August 2005 to work on reconstruction projects.

    At the opening of the consulate, President Calderon, said Mexico wants to assist and protect its citizens in the states of Louisiana and Mississippi that the consulate will serve.

    "With the reopening of this consulate, we will be able to guarantee those Mexicans who live and work in Louisiana and Mississippi that they will have the support of the Mexican government," said President Calderon. "It is my commitment that no matter where there is a Mexican citizen, he or she will also have the support of our government."

    Around 30,000 Mexicans are in the New Orleans area now, part of an influx of workers from various parts of Latin America drawn here by jobs in clean up and construction. President Calderon called this flow of labor a natural consequence of the United States having an advantage in capital and Mexico having an advantage in labor.

    "For that reason, I know that we must have a comprehensive vision in this area, in the area of migration, which will allow us to work together in order to build a more prosperous and safer North American continent," he said.

    While President Bush favors a guest worker program that would allow Mexicans to enter the United States on temporary work visas, Congress set aside the issue after opponents attacked it as an amnesty. Immigration has ceased being a major issue in the US presidential campaign since all three remaining candidates favor some sort of comprehensive reform, but also support stricter enforcement at the border.

    After meeting for a private conversation with President Calderon, President Bush praised bilateral efforts to fight drug traffickers.

    "We got to work hard on our side to make sure we reduce drug use and, at the same time, work with you in close coordination to defeat these drug traffickers," said President Bush. "We need to continue our initiative that we started during your administration, Mr. President, to deal with arms trafficking, arms coming from the United States into Mexico."

    Canada's Prime Minister is focusing mostly on trade issues at this tri-lateral meeting, but he is also expected to discuss a particular border issue with President Bush, that being the need to expand the bridge that joins the US city of Detroit and the Canadian city of Windsor. The bridge was opened in 1929, when there was much less traffic between the two countries. Now, partly as a result of the North American Free Trade Agreement, traffic has grown dramatically.

    The three North American leaders will attend a dinner Monday evening and then hold formal talks Tuesday morning.

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Slow Rebuilding Amid Boko Haram Destruction in Nigeria’s Northeasti
    X
    June 29, 2016 6:15 PM
    Military operations have chased Boko Haram out of towns and cities in Nigeria’s northeast since early last year. But it is only recently that people have begun returning to their homes in Adamawa state, near the border with Cameroon, to try to rebuild their lives. For VOA, Chris Stein traveled to the area and has this report.
    Video

    Video Slow Rebuilding Amid Boko Haram Destruction in Nigeria’s Northeast

    Military operations have chased Boko Haram out of towns and cities in Nigeria’s northeast since early last year. But it is only recently that people have begun returning to their homes in Adamawa state, near the border with Cameroon, to try to rebuild their lives. For VOA, Chris Stein traveled to the area and has this report.
    Video

    Video Clinton Leads Trump, But Many Voters Don't Like Either

    In the U.S. presidential race, most recent polls show Democrat Hillary Clinton with a steady lead over Republican Donald Trump as both presumptive party nominees prepare for their party conventions next month. Trump’s disapproval ratings have risen in some recent surveys, but Clinton also suffers from high negative ratings, suggesting both candidates have a lot of work to do to improve their images before the November election. VOA National correspondent Jim Malone has more from Washington.
    Video

    Video New US Ambassador to Somalia Faces Heavy Challenges

    The new U.S. envoy to Somalia, who was sworn into office Monday, will be the first American ambassador to that nation in 25 years. He will take up his post as Somalia faces a number of crucial issues, including insecurity, an upcoming election, and the potential closure of the Dadaab refugee camp in Kenya. VOA’s Jill Craig asked Somalis living in Kenya’s capital city Nairobi how they feel about the U.S. finally installing a new ambassador.
    Video

    Video At National Zoo, Captivating Animal Sculptures Illustrate Tragedy of Ocean Pollution

    The National Zoo in Washington, D.C., is home to about 1,800 animals, representing 300 species. But throughout the summer, visitors can also see other kinds of creatures there. They are larger-than-life animal sculptures that speak volumes about a global issue — the massive plastic pollution in our oceans. VOA's June Soh takes us to the zoo's special exhibit, called Washed Ashore: Art to Save the Sea.
    Video

    Video Baghdad Bikers Defy War with a Roar

    Baghdad is a city of contradictions. War is a constant. Explosions and kidnappings are part of daily life. But the Iraqi capital remains a thriving city, even if a little beat up. VOA's Sharon Behn reports on how some in Baghdad are defying the stereotype of a nation at war by pursuing a lifestyle known for its iconic symbols of rebellion: motorbikes, leather jackets and roaring engines.
    Video

    Video Melting Pot of Immigrants Working to Restore US Capitol Dome

    The American Iron Works company is one of the firms working to renovate the iconic U.S. Capitol Dome. The company employs immigrants of many different cultural and national backgrounds. VOA’s Arman Tarjimanyan has more.
    Video

    Video Testing Bamboo as Building Material

    For thousands of years various species of bamboo - one of the world's most versatile plants - have been used for diverse purposes ranging from food and medicine to textiles and construction. But its use on a large scale is hampered because it's not manufactured to specific standards but grown in the ground. A University of Pittsburgh professor is on track to changing that. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Orphanage in Iraqi City Houses Kids Who Lost their Parents to Attacks by IS

    An orphanage in Iraqi Kurdistan has become home to scores of Yazidi children who lost their parents after Islamic State militants took over Sinjar in Iraq’s Nineveh Province in 2014. Iraqi Kurdish forces backed by the U.S. airstrikes have since recaptured Sinjar but the need for the care provided by the orphanage continues. VOA’s Kawa Omar filed this report narrated by Rob Raffaele.
    Video

    Video Re-Opening Old Wounds in a Bullet-Riddled Cultural Landmark

    A cultural landmark before Lebanon’s civil war transformed it into a nest of snipers, Beirut’s ‘Yellow House’ is once again set to play a crucial role in the city.  Built in a neo-Ottoman style in the 1920s, in September it is set to be re-opened as a ‘memory museum’ - its bullet-riddled walls and bunkered positions overlooking the city’s notorious ‘Green Line’ maintained for posterity. John Owens reports from Beirut.
    Video

    Video Brexit Resounds in US Presidential Contest

    Britain’s decision to leave the European Union is resounding in America’s presidential race. As VOA’s Michael Bowman reports, Republican presumptive nominee Donald Trump sees Britain’s move as an affirmation of his campaign’s core messages, while Democrat Hillary Clinton sees the episode as further evidence that Trump is unfit to be president.
    Video

    Video NASA Juno Spacecraft, Nearing Jupiter, to Shed Light on Gas Giant

    After a five-year journey, the spacecraft Juno is nearing its destination, the giant planet Jupiter, where it will enter orbit and start sending data back July 4th. As Mike O'Sullivan reports from Pasadena, California, the craft will pierce the veil of Jupiter's dense cloud cover to reveal its mysteries.
    Video

    Video Orlando Shooting Changes Debate on Gun Control

    It’s been nearly two weeks since the largest mass shooting ever in the United States. Despite public calls for tighter gun control laws, Congress is at an impasse. Democratic lawmakers resorted to a 1960s civil rights tactic to portray their frustration. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti explains how the Orlando, Florida shooting is changing the debate.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora