In the United States, parents are to blame for the country’s drug overdose crisis because they don’t hug their children enough, the Mexican president has said.
This is the latest provocative remark from Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador on the problems caused by fentanyl, a powerful synthetic opioid trafficked by Mexican cartels and responsible for approximately 70,000 deaths in the United States a year.
He had been stung by calls in America to designate Mexican drug gangs as terrorist organizations.
Some Republicans have said they support using the US military to crack down on cartels.
Mr Lopez Obrador said family values have collapsed in the United States as parents do not let their children live long enough at home.
He also denied that Mexico produces fentanyl.
Referring to the American crisis, Mr Lopez Obrador said: “There is a lot of disintegration of families, there is a lot of individualism, there is a lack of love, brotherhood, hugs and hugs “.
He has repeatedly argued that Mexico’s tight family values are what protected him from the wave of fentanyl overdoses.
But experts said the cartels were making so much money from the US market that they saw no need to sell fentanyl back home.
Gangs often sell methamphetamine in Mexico, where the drug is more popular because it supposedly helps people work harder.
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Mr Lopez Obrador also called anti-drug policies in the United States a failure and proposed a ban in both countries on the use of fentanyl in medicine, although there is little evidence of the drug passing. from hospitals to the illegal market.
US authorities believe that most of the illicit fentanyl is produced in clandestine Mexican laboratories using Chinese chemicals.
Relatively little comes from the diversion of the medicinal fentanyl used as an anesthetic in surgery and other procedures.
Most illegal fentanyl is squeezed by Mexican cartels into counterfeit pills designed to look like other drugs.
The opioid is 50 times stronger than heroin and even a small dose can be fatal.
It quickly became the deadliest drug in the United States, according to the Drug Enforcement Administration.