Michelle Obama arrives in Mexico City

First Lady Michelle Obama UPI/Roger L. Wollenberg
First Lady Michelle Obama UPI/Roger L. Wollenberg | License Photo

MEXICO CITY, April 14 (UPI) -- U.S. first lady Michelle Obama's first solo mission to Mexico City included a detour to Haiti to discuss the post-earthquake rebuilding effort.

Obama spent several hours in Haiti Tuesday with Jill Biden, wife of Vice President Joe Biden, touring Port-au-Prince and meeting with leaders to discuss Haiti's work to recover from the devastating 7-magnitude earthquake Jan. 12.


"This has been a deeply moving day ... a very emotional day in so many ways," said Obama, who led a moment of silence to honor the victims of the quake. "My husband (President Barack Obama) asked that I remind (Haitian) President President Rene Preval and the people of Haiti that we are going to keep standing with them. So ... as Haiti recovers and rebuilds, you will have a steady and reliable partner in the United States of America."

In Mexico City, Obama will initiate an international campaign to encourage young people to take more active roles in their communities. She arrived in Mexico City shortly after 8 p.m. local time Tuesday, greeted by U.S. Ambassador to Mexico Carlos Pascual and Mexico's ambassador to the United States, Arturo Sarukhan.

Obama's visit will include building on her conversation with Mexican first lady Margarita Zavala in areas of mutual interests, the White House said. Besides meeting in private with Zavala, Obama will visit with students and teachers at a public school in Mexico City, speak to university and high school students at Universidad Iberoamericana, participate in a round-table discussion and visit with U.S. Embassy employees and their families.

When she returns to the United States Thursday, Obama will visit San Diego for a "Let's Move!" event, part of her national initiative to fight childhood obesity.

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