Saturday, September 26, 2020

Hillary Takes "Co-Responsibility" in Trip to Mexico

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said Wednesday that America’s “insatiable” demand for illegal drugs and the inability to stop weapons-smuggling into Mexico are only helping to escalate the violence along the U.S.-Mexico border.

Clinton said, “I feel very strongly we have co-responsibility”, referring to the United States’ “insatiable” demand for illegal drugs and the inability to stop the flow to weapons into Mexico which has helped to fuel the violence.  She pledged that the Obama administration will work together with Mexican authorities to improve security on both sides of the border.

Clinton’s remark shows a renewed sense of diplomacy in recognizing the U.S. role in this situation. During the Bush administration, Mexican officials complained that the U.S. never acknowledged the extent of the U.S. demand for drugs and weapon smuggling.

She added, “Clearly, what we have been doing has not worked, and it is unfair for our incapacity…to be creating a situation where people are holding the Mexican government and people responsible.”

Today she will be visiting Monterrey during which she will brief Mexican officials on the administration’s plans for border and counternarcotics aid to Mexico.

Clinton will also take part in a discussion with university students about U.S.-Mexican relations in general as she continues a brief tour which started with a pledge to stand with Mexico in the fight against drug-related crime

According to senior U.S. officials, Clinton plans to stress Obama’s commitment to pacify the violence and encourage President Calderón and his top aides to boost efforts to combat corruption by promoting police and judicial reform.

U.S. help for such projects has already begun under a three-year, $1.4 billion-dollar Bush administration-era program known as the Merida Initiative, through which Congress already has approved $700 million to support Mexico’s efforts to fight the cartels.

Clinton’s visit is first among several high-level meetings on the U.S.-Mexico matter. Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano and Attorney General Eric Holder are scheduled to meet with Mexican officials in early April; Obama is expected in Mexico right before the Summit of the Americas in Trinidad and Tobago.

NPR

Associated Press

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