Mexico’s president, Andrés Manuel López Obrador said Sunday that he had contracted the coronavirus and was undergoing “medical treatment” for what he described as mild symptoms.
Mr. López Obrador, writing on Twitter, said he would continue to carry out his official duties, including holding a call with President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia that is set for Monday.
“As always, I am optimistic,” he said.
The Mexican leader has consistently downplayed the pandemic, questioning the value of wearing masks and refusing to put one on himself in most public appearances.
On Friday, he posted a photo of himself indoors, again without a mask, conducting a call with President Biden. He was accompanied by Marcelo Ebrard, the foreign minister, and Alfonso Romo, a former top aide — and neither was wearing masks. On Saturday, the president met with local business leaders in Monterrey.
As late as June, Mr. López Obrador was still sounding dismissive. He said that having a clean conscience would help fight off the virus. “No lying, no stealing, no betraying, that helps a lot to not get coronavirus,” he told reporters.
The news comes as Mexico confronts its worst moment since the pandemic began, as deaths hit horrific new highs. On Thursday, Mexico confirmed 1,803 new coronavirus deaths, surging past the previous record of more than 1,500 set days earlier. The country’s hospitals are overrun.
To date, the country has recorded nearly 150,000 deaths, the fourth-highest global death toll
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