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Mexican Governors met in Mexicali, Baja California, in December, 2016.

NUEVO LAREDO, Tamaulipas – A total of eight Mexican governors are expected to participate in the Cumbre de la Conferencia Nacional de Gobernadores (CONAGO, Governors National Conference Summit) that will take place Monday, January 16, in Nuevo Laredo, Tamaulipas.

Immigration will be the central topic, according to Enrique Rivas Cuellar, mayor of the border city.

“A few days before the United States has a new President, it is very important to have the Governor’s presence in our city, and we expect to see results after the different meetings,” Rivas said.

Rivas spoke to the Rio Grande Guardian after a State of the City Address by City of Laredo Mayor, Pete Saenz.

“Today more than ever the relationship between Laredo and Nuevo Laredo is stronger and solid, we have a friendship with a vision to make our region grow into a strong economic zone,” Rivas said.

Rivas explained immigration is the topic for the meeting taking place at Noon at the Custom Brokers Association building.

“The Governors will definitely refer to this topic on Monday, and then I will travel to Tijuana, Baja California, at the end of January where I will meet other mayors looking to project one voice. We will ask the federal government to support for this challenge,” he explained.


On Thursday, U.S. President Barack Obama ended the Cuban “wet foot dry foot” policy.

“We are analyzing how are we going to prepare for the possibility of massive deportations, because we will need to be prepare with shelters, food, medicine, transportation, and consider a budget to help them get home,” Rivas said of Obama’s decision.

After Obama’s decision, immigration officials in Gateway of the Americas International Bridge (Bridge 1) denied entry to a group of Cuban citizens, Thursday night. The group decided to return to Nuevo Laredo.

The City of Nuevo Laredo is hoping to coordinate with state and federal officials to be able to help Cubans who are not being able to cross to the United States.

Congressman Henry Cuellar, D-Laredo, expressed in a statement that “ending this outdated policy is something I’ve been calling on the Administration to do and have been working on with my colleagues in Congress.

“The wet foot dry foot policy provided Cubans an unprecedented special immigration status that no other group of people possessed.”

According to Cuellar, in the last fiscal year around 56,000 Cubans arrived to the U.S. border, of which 34,658 passed through Laredo.

On Thursday, Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson said Cuba agreed “to accept and facilitate the repatriation of Cuban nationals who are ordered removed from the United States.”

Still, the Governor of Tamaulipas, Francisco Garcia Cabeza de Vaca has been asking the federal government to help the border states to distribute special funds that will help them attend challenges surrounding immigration.

Editor’s Note: Click here to read a previous story on the border governors’ meeting.