Federal Security Minister Rosa Icela Rodríguez portrayed Mexico as an innocent victim of drug-related violence during an address at a United Nations event in New York on Thursday.
Speaking at the third UN Chiefs of Police Summit, Rodríguez asserted that Mexico doesn’t manufacture the firearms used in cartel-related violence here and that Mexicans don’t consume synthetic drugs such as methamphetamine and fentanyl.
“Do we make the weapons? No. Do we consume the synthetic drugs? No. Do we provide the dead? Unfortunately, yes,” she told a summit event attended by United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres and security officials from around the world.
While Mexicans may not be large consumers of synthetic drugs, Mexican criminal organizations are major suppliers of them to the United States – the world’s largest illicit drug market – and other countries around the world. An article published by The Wall Street Journal this week details how the Sinaloa Cartel and the Jalisco New Generation Cartel came to dominate the supply of fentanyl – a potent synthetic opioid – to the United States.
En la #UNCOPS2022 de @ONU_es instamos a las naciones participantes a trabajar juntas para la #ConstrucciónDeLaPaz y reiteramos que la Estrategia de Seguridad de #México prioriza la atención profunda a las causas que generan la violencia. pic.twitter.com/r014MUchNB
— Rosa Icela Rodríguez Velázquez (@rosaicela_) September 1, 2022
In her address, Rodríguez said that upon taking office in December 2018, President López Obrador “received a nation mired in violence due to the so-called war against drugs undertaken by previous governments.”
The current government decided that the “fire must stop,” she said, asserting that it didn’t take office to “win a war” but to bring peace to the country.
Rodríguez said that “part of the insecurity of my country has its origin in the consumption of drugs around the world.”
In Mexico, the global use of illicit drugs coupled with the illegal trafficking of weapons generates a “spiral of violence,” she said.
“… There are nations that face a public health problem due to the consumption of these substances. As Martin Luther King said, ‘peace is not merely the absence of tension, it is the presence of justice.’ I insist, countries that are consumers [of drugs] and countries that are producers and through which drugs pass have the responsibility to work together to build peace,” Rodríguez said.
The security minister highlighted that the government’s security strategy “prioritizes profound attention to the causes that generate violence and poverty with universal social programs” – the so-called abrazos, no balazos or “hugs, not bullets” approach.
Rodríguez used a different catchphrase to encapsulate the strategy, saying that it could be summarized by López Obrador’s motto, “For the good of all, the poor come first.”
In a three-minute address, she went on to assert that the federal security cabinet is not complicit with organized crime, “as occurred in the past.”
“As an example, it’s enough to say that a few kilometers from here in Brooklyn, a former Mexican security minister is imprisoned,” Rodríguez said, in reference to Genaro García Luna.
She also highlighted that in 2020 López Obrador took a groundbreaking decision to appoint her – a woman – as security minister. “Women are peace builders,” Rodríguez said. “We contribute a lot to peace.”
Mexico News Daily