Mexican president says he has COVID-19

Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, Mexico's president, speaks during a news conference at the National Palace in Mexico City, Mexico, on Wednesday, Nov. 25, 2020. Lopez Obrador reiterated Wednesday that hell wait until the U.S. presidential election process is fully concluded before he congratulates a winner. Photographer: Alejandro Cegarra/Bloomberg via Getty Images
FILE PHOTO: Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, Mexico’s president. Photographer: Alejandro Cegarra/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador announced Sunday that he was infected with the coronavirus. He said his symptoms are mild.

“I regret to inform you that I am infected with COVID-19. The symptoms are mild but I am already undergoing medical treatment,” the 67-year-old said in a message on social media.

“As always, I am optimistic. We will come through this together,” he said.

The left-wing populist is rarely seen wearing a mask in public, including at his daily news conferences, and has kept up most of his activities during the pandemic.

Lopez Obrador has continued his travels to different parts of the country and on Friday visited the northern state of San Luis Potosi.

He was criticized for being slow to impose a lockdown at the start of the pandemic and for continuing to hold rallies and greet supporters with handshakes and hugs.

Lopez Obrador suffered a heart attack in 2013 and underwent angioplasty. He also suffers from hypertension — a risk factor for COVID-19.

He joins other world leaders, including former US President Donald Trump, Brazilian president Jair Bolsonaro and British prime minister Boris Johnson, who have caught the virus.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau tweeted that he wished his Mexican counterpart a “full and speedy recovery.”

“We wish him a speedy recovery. I know that his people need him and that Latin America accompanies him in this difficult time we are going through,” Argentine President Alberto Fernandes said on Twitter.

Former Mexican presidents Felipe Calderon (2006-2012) and Enrique Pena Nieto (2012-2018) also took to Twitter to wish Lopez Obrador a successful recovery.

Lopez Obrador said he would work from the presidential palace this week and delegated Interior Minister Olga Sanchez to represent him at his daily news conference.

He also said he would take part in a telephone call with Russian President Vladimir Putin on Monday about the possibility of Mexico acquiring the Sputnik V coronavirus vaccine.

Mexico has officially registered more than 1.75 million coronavirus cases and nearly 150,000 deaths — the world’s fourth-highest toll after the United States, Brazil and India.