Mar 10, 2012

Drug Policy Debate: Central American presidents to discuss options in combating drug trafficking

Vice President Biden apparently thinks the U.S. has Central America in its pocket on the drug war. But apparently local leaders have other possibilities in mind. 

La Jornada: "President Porfirio Lobo of Honduras said Friday that his counterparts in Colombia, Jose Manuel Santos, and Mexico, Felipe Calderón, will join their Central American peers on March 24 in Guatemala to discuss alternatives combating drug trafficking, including decriminalization.

However, in Mexico City, sources from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and president's office reported that, to date, the attendance of the Mexican president has not been contemplated, because on March 24, Pope Benedict XVI will visit the country.

Lobo said that the Central American presidents entrusted to him to invite Santos and Calderon to Guatemala and that they have responded positively to the invitation.

Last Tuesday in Tegucigalpa, Honduras, the presidents of Central American Security Initiative (CASI) met with the U.S. Vice President Joseph Biden, to address issues relating to regional security. Subsequently, the regional leaders held a separate meeting to hear Guatemalan Otto Perez' proposal to convene a meeting to discuss alternative strategies to combat drug trafficking, which is generating growing violence in Central America.

Lobo said , "Yesterday (Thursday) I contacted President Santos. He told me that he has been working on this issue and (...) he was seekiing an agreement with the president of Mexico to bring some position to Guatemala on March 24." The president of Honduras said that Central Americans "are paying with many lives for the problem of drug trafficking and we have to find some alternatives to lower the levels of violence in the region."

Central America is considered the most violent region in the world, especially the north, including Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras. The latter country has a rate of 85 homicides per 100 000 inhabitants, one of the highest in the world." Spanish original

No comments:

Post a Comment