Mexico observed a subdued Cinco de Mayo holiday Tuesday as the coronavirus pandemic continued to spread, with leaders and officials using the occasion to express solidarity with Mexicans living in the US.
“There was a lot of solidarity with the people of the United States and Mexicans that live in the US,” President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said in his morning press conference on why the US continues to celebrate the holiday.
“There was a very favorable feeling for Mexico in this war of intervention.”
Although Cinco de Mayo, or May 5, is a Mexican holiday, it is typically celebrated more extravagantly in the US than in Mexico.
Cinco de Mayo has been celebrated since May 5, 1862, when the Mexican army achieved victory over the French in the Mexican state of Puebla. While Mexicans do recognize the day as a holiday, it is not traditionally celebrated with happy hour deals and parties as it is in its northern neighbor.
But on this Cinco de Mayo, Mexican politicians were more solemn about the country’s historical victory.
Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard used the holiday to recognize Mexicans living in the US. He offered them his support as the US continues to be racked by the coronavirus.
“It is a very important date in Mexico, but it’s more so for you all [Mexicans] in the United States. And more so in the circumstances that we have experienced in recent weeks,” Ebrard said.
“I want to tell you all that you are part of the Mexican nation.”
Ebrard said he was committed to supporting Mexican migrants living in the United States as experts predict that the number of coronavirus cases and deaths will grow as the country begins to relax its regulations.
He then offered his condolences to the families of the 661 Mexicans who have died of the coronavirus in the U.S.
“Today, we commemorate here in Mexico something really important to the formation of our homeland, and something highly relevant in the US that always gives us identity and cohesion. But now even more so.” Ebrard said.
“I want you to know we are with you all,” he added, referring to Mexican migrants living in the US.
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