Mar 8, 2012

Drug Trade: US State Department Report Paints Grim Picture of Central American Drug Trade

The Pan-American Post: "The US State Department 2012 International Narcotics Control Strategy Report was released Wednesday...

It warns that the security situation will likely continue to deteriorate in Belize, which the White House added to its list of major drug producing and transit countries in 2011.... The outlook is similarly grim for countries in the Northern Triangle. 79 percent of all cocaine smuggling flights from South America now pass through Honduras.... Meanwhile, 15 percent of the total cocaine exports which enter the US first pass through Guatemala. El Salvador, which along with Belize was named a major drug transit country for the first time last year, is also described as facing serious security challenges. 

... On drug trafficking and Mexico, the report finds that drug-related murders rose 20 percent between 2010 and 2011, and that much of the fight over drug trafficking routes involves “multiple fractured organizations.” The domestic market for drugs in Mexico is growing, especially in the northern border states, where drugs are used as payment for smugglers. 

Other trafficking trends include the increased presence of Mexican smugglers in Latin America, the Caribbean, and Europe. Rather than maritime or air routes, land corridors through Mexico and Central America are now the most important smuggling routes for cocaine headed to the US, the report says. ... Mexico’s major drug trafficking organizations may be fracturing, but “significant challenges” still remain, the report concludes." read more"

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