U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland says Mexico could do more against fentanyl

U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland says Mexico could do more against fentanyl

The administration of President Joe Biden notified Congress that it does not oppose the possibility of designating Mexican cartels as terrorists, but warned that there are diplomatic concerns with Mexico that must be considered because the United States requires its support in the fight against drugs.

In an appearance before the Senate Judiciary Committee, the Attorney General, Merrick Garland, seconded the complaint of the Federal Anti-Drug Administration (DEA) in the sense that Mexico needs to increase its cooperation in the fight against drugs, particularly against fentanyl.

“Fentanyl is a horrible epidemic, it is an epidemic that has been unleashed on purpose by the Sinaloa and Jalisco Nueva Generación cartels,” he declared.

“Would you object to some of us designating them as foreign terrorist organizations?” South Carolina Sen. Lindsay Graham asked him.

“I wouldn’t be opposed, but I want to point out that there are diplomatic concerns. We need Mexico’s assistance on this.”

The designation of major cartels as Foreign Terrorist Organizations will give US agencies greater authority to freeze cartel assets, deny entry to their members and apply harsher punishments against those who support them.

But experts believe that an appointment is more symbolic than practical and that it could become a double-edged sword since it would not impact the operation of the cartels in Mexican territory and could affect crucial aspects of the relationship with Mexico.

“Is Mexico helping us effectively with our fentanyl problem?” Graham insisted. “He is helping us but he could do much more,” said Garland, who told senators that she has traveled to Mexico twice to seek more cooperation.

The prosecutor reported to the committee that a task force dedicated to combating fentanyl and human smuggling is in charge of stopping the arrival of chemical precursors in Mexico, identifying clandestine laboratories, and working closely not only with Mexico, but also with the governments of Honduras, Guatemala, and El Salvador.

Source: Excelsior

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