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Mexico denied its president called Trump and praised him on immigration

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Mexico’s government says its leader did not recently call President Trump to praise his immigration policies.

“[Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto] has not had any recent telephone communication with President Donald Trump,” Mexico’s Foreign Relations Department said in a statement late Monday.

The Mexican government’s statement seems at odds with Trump’s remarks about Pena Nieto earlier Monday.

“As you know, the border was a tremendous problem and they’re close to an 80 percent stoppage,” Trump said.

“Even the president of Mexico called me – they said their southern border, very few people are coming because they know they’re not going to get through our border, which is the ultimate compliment.”

Some Twitter users on Wednesday criticized Trump for appearing to misstate when his most recent conversation with Pena Nieto occurred.

An American official reportedly confirmed that Trump and Pena Nieto had not recently had a conversation.

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Mexico’s Foreign Relations Department said, however, that Pena Nieto and Trump talked about immigration policy during last month’s G20 Summit in Hamburg, Germany.

Pena Nieto and Trump discussed how the deportations of Mexicans from the U.S. had dropped 31 percent between January and June, as compared with the same period last year.

The Mexican leader also said 47 percent fewer Central American migrants had entered his nation in that window of time.

Trump’s suggestion he spoke with Pena Nieto has become an issue in Mexico, with opposition legislators there criticizing their talk as a “secret phone call.”

Mexican opposition politicians have also attacked Pena Nieto for allegedly complimenting Trump on immigration.

Trump is a controversial figure in Mexico due to many of his immigration positions, most notably his calls for a wall dividing the U.S. from its southern neighbor.

Mexico has officially opposed Trump on the wall issue, and it has also denied it will pay for the controversial structure.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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