Feb 27, 2012

Drug War: US Homeland Security Secretary visits Guatemala

After voicing his opinions on drug decriminalization, Guatemalan President Otto Perez Molina will have the opportunity to meet with US Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano. 

Prensa Libre: "Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano will visit Guatemala on Monday to meet with President Otto Perez Molina and his ministers.

Through a press release, the United States Embassy in Guatemala stated that Napolitano will be accompanied by Deputy Commissioner of US Border Patrol and Customs Agency, David Aguilar, and the Undersecretary of International Relations for US Homeland Security, Alan Bersin.

Napolitano will arrive in Guatemala this afternoon as part of a tour that will also pass through Mexico, El Salvador, Costa Rica, and Panama. The tour will last from February 27-29.

According to the US embassy, the objective of the trip will be to “meet with international counterparts to discuss the efforts of the United States government to facilitate business and travel, improve the exchange of information, and to make sure that work is the safest and most protected as it can be, and that the global supply chain is reliable.”


Combating drug trafficking will be another issue addressed during the meeting between Napolitano and Perez Molina—the Guatemalan President has recently proposed to lead a debate about drug decriminalization and Vice President Roxana Baldetti will begin a lobbying tour this week on the issue throughout Central America.

Another issue expected to be addressed is the request for Temporary Protection Status (TPS) for Guatemalans who live in the United States without documentation.

Both issues were already discussed with the Secretary when Guatemalan Chancellor, Harold Caballeros, recently visited the US. After the visit, Caballeros signaled that Napolitano showed interest in aiding mechanisms that support TPS for Guatemalans and the continued training for border patrol agents.

Napolitano’s activities will begin at 5:00PM when she arrives in Guatemala." Spanish original

Translation: Mikael Rojas, Americas Mexico Blog

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