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Viewing cable 06MEXICO5698, SRE'S GUTIERREZ TELLS SHANNON BORDER FENCE A

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
06MEXICO5698 2006-10-06 17:05 2011-02-21 12:12 UNCLASSIFIED//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY Embassy Mexico
Appears in these articles:
http://wikileaks.jornada.com.mx/notas/calderon-se-pronunciara-contra-muro-para-que-ni-un-voto-a-amlo
VZCZCXRO2723
RR RUEHCD RUEHGD RUEHHO RUEHMC RUEHNG RUEHNL RUEHRD RUEHRS RUEHTM
DE RUEHME #5698/01 2791737
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 061737Z OCT 06
FM AMEMBASSY MEXICO
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 3557
INFO RUEHXC/ALL US CONSULATES IN MEXICO COLLECTIVE
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC
RUEHGV/USMISSION GENEVA 0926
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 0106
RHMFIUU/CDR USNORTHCOM
RHMFIUU/CDR USSOUTHCOM MIAMI FL
81011
2006-10-06 17:37:00
06MEXICO5698
Embassy Mexico
UNCLASSIFIED//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY

VZCZCXRO2723
RR RUEHCD RUEHGD RUEHHO RUEHMC RUEHNG RUEHNL RUEHRD RUEHRS RUEHTM
DE RUEHME #5698/01 2791737
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 061737Z OCT 06
FM AMEMBASSY MEXICO
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 3557
INFO RUEHXC/ALL US CONSULATES IN MEXICO COLLECTIVE
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC
RUEHGV/USMISSION GENEVA 0926
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 0106
RHMFIUU/CDR USNORTHCOM
RHMFIUU/CDR USSOUTHCOM MIAMI FL

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 MEXICO 005698 
 
SIPDIS 
 
SENSITIVE 
SIPDIS 
 
E.O. 12958: N/A 
TAGS: KSEP MX PGOV PHUM PREL UNGA WHO
SUBJECT: SRE'S GUTIERREZ TELLS SHANNON BORDER FENCE A 
BITTER PILL 
 
 
1. (SBU) Summary:  A subdued Geronimo Gutierrez used his 
October 2 meeting with A/S Shannon to voice Mexico's deep 
frustration with last week's Senate vote to fund a border 
fence, saying it was a "bitter pill" at a bad time that would 
complicate bilateral relations. Nevertheless, Gutierrez was 
hopeful that senior level contacts would continue and help 
move the relationship forward.  SRE's Undersecretary for 
North America took the opportunity to thank A/S Shannon for 
the scheduled November 9 meeting between president-elect 
Calderon and President Bush, and briefly touched on pending 
IO issues, such as the upcoming vote for the GRULAC UNSC 
seat.  End Summary 
 
2. (SBU) Gutierrez began by thanking A/S Shannon for his 
early a.m. Televisa interview, which was focused in part on 
the Senate vote and Mexican reaction.  He said that Shannon's 
comments, which placed the vote in the context of a  national 
debate on immigration and emphasized president Bush's ongoing 
commitment to a broader immigration reform, might help defuse 
some of the anger felt in Mexico at the congressional 
decision to go forward with construction.   Nevertheless, he 
said, last week's vote was a bitter pill for Mexican's to 
swallow that complicated the relationship.   His biggest 
worry, he stated, was that during a critical period, the 
fence would box in transition leaders and make it more 
difficult for them to take decisions that would move Mexico 
closer to the United States on a range of issues.   Foreign 
affairs decisions, he noted, always involved heavy 
expenditures of political capital in Mexico. Calderon would 
now be paying double. He hoped that A/S Shannon was correct 
in that the fence was not the last chapter in the immigration 
story. 
 
3. (SBU)  A/S Shannon assured Gutierrez that the 
administration remained committed to broader immigration 
reform. Given the debate in the U.S. about border security, 
many in Congress felt the need to act on getting a fence in 
place in the short-term.  The president maintains a more 
far-sighted regard for the need for broader reform, however. 
 
4. (SBU)  By way of offering local context in which the 
Senate vote was taken, Gutierrez outlined the domestic 
challenges both the current administration and 
president-elect Calderon face. (Embassy comment: Gutierrez 
painted a far more pessimistic picture than Calderon's own 
advisors provided Shannon in a meeting just prior to his 
visit to SRE, noted in SEPTEL  End comment)  He provide a 
brief, and by-now familiar sketch of Mexico's post-electoral 
scene and underscored the particular difficulties the current 
Oaxaca-related unrest present the Fox administration.  He 
noted also that Calderon's transition team was taking great 
pains to avoid moves that might radicalize government 
opponents, but that the president-elect will face difficult 
challenges early on in his administration. 
 
5. (SBU)  Elevating his gaze beyond the fence and the 
difficulties it poses for Mexico, Gutierrez looked toward the 
schedule of high-level meetings slated for this fall.  He 
thanked A/S Shannon in particular for the November 9 meeting 
offered by the White House to president-elect Calderon. 
This was an important opportunity  that both sides needed to 
take maximum advantage of; SRE will be coordinating closely 
with Calderon's transition team and the USG in order to shape 
it.  Both sides agreed that such high-level encounters remain 
key to the relationship.  Shannon noted the recent North 
American Forum in this regard and that said such encounters 
should be backed up by good public diplomacy. Gutierrez said 
they help educate elites and public about what closer 
bilateral engagement can offer -- and that it does not 
represent an  erosion of Mexican sovereignty.  Mexican elites 
are broadening their vision of foreign policy and national 
security engagement, but there needs to be more work done to 
shore up public support. 
 
6. (SBU)  A/S Shannon raised the upcoming UNSC vote with 
Gutierrez, noting that he had had a good meeting in New York 
with SRE's Undersecretary for Latin American, Jorge Chen. 
While Chen remains worried about Venezuela's prospects for 
gaining a seat on the security council, Shannon noted that 
the U.S. believed Chavez has not marshaled sufficient votes 
for a first round win, and that his inflammatory UN speech 
had probably cost him support. He urged Mexico to continue to 
work hard on Guatemala's behalf.  Gutierrez reaffirmed 
Mexico's support for Guatemala's candidacy. Venezuela's 
presence on the Security Council, he said, would undermine 
 
MEXICO 00005698  002 OF 002 
 
 
both the U.N. and the GRULAC. 
 
7. (SBU)  At the meeting's close, SRE officials reminded A/S 
Shannon of the November election for the World Health 
Organization's Director Generalship and repeated Mexico's 
request for USG support for the candidacy of Public Health 
Secretary Julio Frenk. 
 
SIPDIS 
 
8. (SBU)  Assistant Secretary Shannon has cleared this 
message. 
 
 
 
 
 
Visit Mexico City's Classified Web Site at 
http://www.state.sgov.gov/p/wha/mexicocity 
 
GARZA