Mexico condemns new Arizona immigration law

20:32, April 28, 2010      

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The Mexican government has condemned new legislation introduced by the United States to curb immigration as "discriminatory".

It has also urged its nationals to carry proper documentation with them to Arizona in response to the new laws.

The legislation, signed into law last week, requires Arizona police to question people on their immigration status. But the Mexican foreign ministry says there will be a "negative political environment" for Mexican visitors and migrants.

The law is due to come into effect in 90 days despite strong criticism from President Barack Obama and protests.

Under the new rules, those unable to show that they are legally allowed in the U.S. could be given six-month jail sentences and fined 2,500 U.S. dollars.

Mexican President Felipe Calderon has warned that relations with Arizona would suffer and that his country would use all means at its disposal to defend its people.

However supporters say not enough is being done at a national level to address the problem of rising immigration and the influx of drugs crossing the border into the United States. Arizona is home to an estimated 460,000 illegal immigrants.



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