World Watch: Shifts in US relations

Kayla Chambers, Layout Editor

BRITAIN

In Jan. 12 speech, British Prime Minister Theresa May announced her plan to carry out the public’s vote in favor of Brexit. May spoke about immigration control, workers’ rights and trade in hopes to develop a “truly Global Britain” in the upcoming years.

During a joint press conference on Jan. 24 between U.S. President Trump and the British prime minister, May brought up Britain’s leave from the EU with the possibility of the United States working with Britain after the transition.

“We are discussing how we can establish a trade negotiation agreement, take forward immediate high-level talks, lay the groundwork for U.K.-U.S. trade agreement and identify the practical steps we can take now in order to enable companies in both countries to trade and do business with one another more easily,” May said.

Dr. Steven Nawara, a professor from the Department of Political Science, explains that the U.S. doesn’t have much of a hand in Britain’s separation from the EU, but may have a role later on if the president “[signals] a willingness to enter into a trade deal with the U.K.”

“Such a move might give the U.K. greater leverage in the Brexit negotiations and make their exit less costly,” Nawara said.

MEXICO

Relations between Mexico and the U.S. have been rocky ever since the executive order was released Jan. 25 calling for the building of a wall and tightened security along the border of the U.S. and Mexico.

Mexican senators called Mexican President Peña Nieto, urging him to cancel an upcoming meeting with President Trump the Tuesday following the executive order. President Nieto tweeted twice the next day stating he wouldn’t attend the meeting and that Mexico “reiterates its will of working with the United States.” The former president, Vincente Fox, has also addressed Trump multiple times on Twitter, denouncing Mexico’s part in building the wall.

Nawara thinks the U.S. needs to keep in mind that Mexico is one of the largest trading partners for the U.S., and maintaining a good relationship is vital.

“Any deviation from the free-trade policies that are currently in place will certainly have consequences for the American consumer, as prices for goods produced in Mexico would increase and the demand for American-made products in Mexico would decline,” Nawara said.

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) operations also have potential to add to growing tension between both countries after a series of “raids” performed by ICE that arrested a little less than 700 illegal immigrants earlier this month. Of that number, 75 percent were found to be convicted criminals. Records have not been provided by the

Department of Homeland Security specifically citing what crimes were committed by the 75 percent.

CNN reported a statement released by Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, who found trouble with “lack of transparency and potential due process violations” in ICE’s recent actions.

IRAN

Iran conducted a ballistic missile test Jan. 29, supposedly breaking a 2015 UN Security Council resolution that endorsed the nuclear deal made with Iran under the Obama administration.

Iran sustains that Resolution 2231 was not violated, while U.S. officials argue the opposite, even though the UN Security Council resolution only “calls upon” Iran not to “undertake any activity related to ballistic missiles” and launches using “ballistic missile technology,” rather than directly ordering a ban on such activity.

“Incoming presidents are often tested by foreign nations during the beginning of their term in order to get a sense of how the new administrations will deal with provocation and crises,” said Nawara.

The Trump administration responded to the push by Iran Feb. 3 by piling new sanctions on 25 entities and companies from Iran that supported Iran’s nuclear missile program and terrorists groups.

Iran will have an election for a new president in May. With new sanctions and executive orders, such as the immigration ban that the new administration has imposed, campaigns between Iranian candidates will be worth watching as U.S. relations could shift under new leadership.

Kayla Chambers
Kayla Chambers is a junior double majoring in english and journalism. This is her second year as a layout editor for The Flyer.

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