Kelly, left, and Osorio Chong met this week in Mexico. Kelly, left, and Osorio Chong met this week in Mexico.

‘Insatiable appetite’ for drugs fuels crime

US official refers to the problem behind violence after two-day Mexico visit

Mexico and the United States have pledged to work together to find new ways to combat organized crime, arms trafficking and the flow of drugs across the border although a U.S. official conceded that his country’s “insatiable appetite” for illegal drugs was fueling violence on both sides of the border.

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Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly held high-level talks on the issues with members of the Mexican government including Interior Secretary Miguel Ángel Osorio Chong, during a three-day trip to Mexico.

At a press conference held yesterday by the two cabinet secretaries, Kelly reaffirmed the U.S. commitment to the partnership between the two nations.

“I cannot stress enough how valuable the US..-Mexico relationship is to each of our nations.”

He also promised to continue to work to counter the demand for drugs in the United States, which he conceded was central to the problem.

“I acknowledged to my counterpart that America’s insatiable appetite for drugs is the cause of much of the turmoil on their side of the border. I pledge to continue to work with my government and anyone else to help in this fight to address drug demand reduction in the United States.”

The former military commander said that drug overdoses were responsible for 60,000 deaths in the United States last year and a collaborative approach would be needed to solve the shared problem.

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“As a practical matter, that means looking towards new agreements where we can share information, training, infrastructure and planning resources. We will accomplish this with mutual trust and support.”

Kelly stated that the aim was “to defeat the scourge of illegal drugs with special emphasis on the heroin, cocaine and fentanyl that is flooding the hemisphere and resulting in deaths in both our countries.”

The strategy has the backing of President Donald Trump, Kelly said, as “the president has been very clear about his desire to work with Mexico on many of our shared issues.”

Osorio Chong also reaffirmed Mexico’s commitment to cooperate and overcome differences between the two countries.

He echoed his counterpart by stating that governments of both countries are seeking “new ways to collaborate on issues such as combating arms trafficking.”

“We must see beyond the differences and work together to create lasting conditions of peace and prosperity for the region,” Osorio Chong added.

Kelly and Osorio Chong have met four times since Trump was sworn in in January.

During this week’s visit, Kelly traveled to Guerrero where he witnessed first-hand an operation aimed at eradicating opium poppy plantations.

Kelly also met with President Enrique Peña Nieto, Foreign Secretary Luis Videgaray and Finance Secretary José Antonio Meade and he announced that U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions would meet soon with his Mexican counterpart, Raúl Cervantes.

“These connections are an expression of the president’s intent to create stronger, durable bonds between our countries,” he asserted.

Presidents Peña Nieto and Trump met yesterday on the sidelines of the G20 Summit in Hamburg, Germany.

Trump told reporters that he  “absolutely” expected Mexico to pay for his proposed border wall, despite a previous agreement that the two leaders would not publicly discuss the issue.

Source:  Hoy (sp), Milenio (sp)

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  • Maria Guadelupe

    since everyone from the municipal crooked cop to state investigators and the state prosecutors, who collect the mordida money to distribute to everyone in the court system and MPs office are all making a KILLING in corruption profiting, now more than ever with new bail policies. And since those above state authorities are wholly compromi$ed financially and do what the cartel says to do, or else, why would anyone expect much but better save for the fashion wear at the courts of our nation, nicer shoes and better cars for those raking it in from both sides!

  • If the “insatiable appetite for illegal drugs was fueling violence on both sides of the border,” is the problem, the there is a real solution that has been proven to work in Portugal. Decriminalization is the solution. Because the drugs are illegal, it attracts the criminal element. It also elevates the prices and allows products of varying degrees of purity into an unregulated market. Decriminalization (or legalization) allows for the massive profits to dry up. Then addiction can be treated as a disease rather than as a crime. If this is not being considered, then the people discussing this in the US and Mexico are not actually interested in solving the problem, rather they simply want to appear to be looking for a solution.

    • Mike S

      I believe you are absolutely correct. What we have now in the US is a dismal expensive failure and has been for 30 years. Somebody tell that to Jeff sessions.

    • cooncats

      What Keith said!

  • Glen Olives

    Nothing is going to change anytime soon. Game pieces will be shuffled around the board, that’s all.

  • Güerito

    Kelly is naive and uninformed.

  • Sharon

    Here’s a partial solution to the problem. Replace all the politicians, police and other officials with people who MUST take regular polygraphs and drug tests. Then legalize marijuana – that is what the cartels sell to fund making other garbage like meth. Or was I the only one that watched Breaking Bad? Think of all the tax money they could get LEGALLY!!!!!! Oh and BTW building walls will not stop the drug trade.

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