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Report to Senate Committee on Foreign Relations on U.S.-Mexican Efforts to Defeat Organized Crime and Drug Trafficking

Published May 18, 2010

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Report to Senate Committee on Foreign Relations on U.S.-Mexican Efforts to Defeat Organized Crime and Drug Trafficking

This report, called "Common Enemy, Common Struggle: Progress in U.S. Mexican Efforts to Defeat Organized Crime and Drug Trafficking", was prepared for the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations. It was released on May 18, 2010.

The letter of transmittal from Ranking Member Richard Lugar states in part,

"DEAR COLLEAGUE: From April 28 to May 1, 2010, I directed my senior Senate Foreign Relations Committee (SFRC) staff member for Latin America, Carl Meacham, to visit Mexico City to assess the Obama Administration’s recent 2011 budget request of $310 million for the Merida Initiative. The Merida Initiative, proposed to the U.S. Congress by former President George W. Bush in the fall of 2007, is a multi-year and multi-country effort (involving Mexico, the Dominican Republic, Haiti, and the nations of Central America) to provide equipment, training, and technical assistance for long-term reform and oversight of security agencies. The Initiative has allocated more than $1.3 billion for Mexico from 2008 to 2010, nearly a 10-fold increase above 2007 levels of assistance to that country. As a result, Mexico is now the top recipient of U.S. assistance in the Western Hemisphere.

...This report highlights the need to deepen the partnership between the United States and Mexico in a way that respects our mutual sovereignty and yet addresses the shared problems caused by criminal organizations operating on both sides of the border. By history, by geography, and by family ties, the United States and Mexico are natural partners. Our policies toward Mexico should reflect our common interests and objectives.

In the run-up to Mexican President Felipe Calderon’s state visit on May 19–20, I hope this report will help stimulate broader debate on the importance of building a closer partnership that will improve our capacity to address shared challenges.

Though we still have a long way to go, it is clear that efforts to fight the common threat posed to our societies by drug traffickers and organized crime are showing positive results and should be bolstered. I look forward to continuing to work with you on these issues, and welcome any comments you may have."

 

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