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Mexico's Ebrard lodges complaint over MORENA process, eyes new movement

Mexico's former Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard holds a press conference in Mexico City

MEXICO CITY (Reuters) - Mexican former Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard said on Monday he had presented a formal complaint against the ruling party's primary process to a pick a candidate for the 2024 presidential election and pledged to form his own political movement.

Saying it was tainted by multiple irregularities, Ebrard denounced the primary held by the National Regeneration Movement's (MORENA) just before the party on Wednesday announced the victor, former Mexico City Mayor Claudia Sheinbaum.

Ebrard finished runner-up in the contest.

"We're presenting a complaint in our party with total conviction that what I'm saying is true," Ebrard told reporters during a brief press conference.

"What course of action we take will depend on the response from MORENA," he added. "If (things) stay as they are, I would no longer have any interest in being in MORENA."

Ebrard, a longtime ally of President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, said he would organize a "national political movement" starting Sept. 18, without going into details.

Lopez Obrador has publicly backed Sheinbaum as the winner of the MORENA contest and said Ebrard is free to do what he likes.

Ebrard has left open the possibility of joining forces with the center-left Citizens' Movement, the only significant party yet to select a presidential candidate for 2024.

Ebrard is widely viewed as an economic moderate who would encourage more investment to the country, enabling it to benefit from so-called nearshoring as companies shift their exposure away from Asia to be closer to the United States.

(Reporting by Carolina Pulice; Editing by Sandra Maler)