The United States is looking to boost its presence in Mexico to fight the flood of drugs crossing the border.
Ken Salazar, who is America’s ambassador to Mexico, said Saturday the United States is looking to get wider support from Mexico for the activities of Drug Enforcement Administration agents and members of other law enforcement agencies, according to the Associated Press.
Last year, Mexico terminated the immunity from prosecution foreign agents had previously enjoyed and limited contacts with Mexican officials.
The impact of this request would broaden the numbers and impact of agents in Mexico, the AP reported.
“We are going to have cooperation from the Mexican government, that was what was agreed upon yesterday, to make sure that law enforcement resources that we have functioning here in conjunction with Mexican law enforcement authorities have the ability to do so,” Salazar said.
“So yes, that includes our request, and we’re working this with the government on having the opportunity to again bring agents including our DEA agents, but we’re doing in this in a way where we’re doing it in partnership with Mexico,” he continued.
“We’re willing to share [intelligence] with our counterparts in Mexico, but they themselves are too afraid to even engage with us because of repercussions from their own government if they get caught working with DEA,” said Matthew Donahue, the DEA’s deputy chief of operations.
“It’s essential that we get [Mexico’s] cooperation for the safety of American citizens as well as to stem the flow of violence in Mexico,” Donahue said. “We would hope they’d want to sit down at the table and work bilaterally.”
As long as the border is open, will it matter what the DEA does in Mexico?
He then said that the lack of cooperation was “a national health threat, it’s a national safety threat.”
Drug cartels in Mexico “do not fear any kind of law enforcement … or military inside of Mexico right now.”
The Biden administration’s immigration policies have also been blamed for the flow of drugs from Mexico into the U.S.
“Just the amount of fentanyl just apprehended by the Texas Department of Public Safety just this year is more than enough to kill every man, woman and child in the states of Texas, California and New York,” Texas Gov. Greg Abbott stated, according to Fox News.
“It used to be a kilo here, 10 kilos there. We’re seizing 100 kilos, 40 kilos, 50 kilos,” said DEA Special Agent Dante Sorianello. “We have not been faced with the lethality of fentanyl in the streets right now.”
“The trafficking groups that smuggle narcotics across the border – were trying to surge and push a lot more narcotics into the country because they felt that the checks and balances and security was lessened, due to the immigration issues occurring,” he said, according to KABB-TV.
“In the last year, DEA and law enforcement authorities have seized over 9.5 million counterfeit – fentanyl-laced pills. That is over twice as many that were seized in the last two years. So this is a real threat that is out there,” he contined.
Fox News noted that on Oct. 1, the DEA seized $1.2 million worth of fentanyl and cocaine at the border.