US lawmakers urge terrorist label for Mexican cartels

A broken windshield
© AFP/File


WASHINGTON (AFP) – Key US lawmakers urged Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in a letter released Friday to support labeling Mexican drug cartels as terrorist groups and craft a strategy to help Mexico defeat them.

“The Mexican drug cartels present a dangerous threat to the national security of the United States,” said the group, led by House Homeland Security Committee Chairman Peter King, a Republican.

“It is clear violent actions taken by the Mexican drug cartels have evolved and are acts of terrorism. These cartels should be classified as terrorist organizations,” they wrote.

Republican Representatives Mike Rogers, Michael McCaul, Jeff Duncan, Dan Burton, Sue Myrick, and Brian Bilbray signed the letter, which came as Clinton hosted Mexican Foreign Minister Patricia Espinosa.

“I strongly urge you to use every capability of the US Government to counter this growing threat to our economy, our security and well being of our citizens. Equally as important, we must make sure Mexico does not become a failed state and yet another haven for terrorists,” the letter said.

The lawmakers warned that escalating violence perpetrated by the cartels in Mexico “threatens the very foundation of that nation” and threatens to turn into into “a lawless haven.”

The letter noted that former president Bill Clinton designated the leftist Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) as a terrorist group in the 1990s, and urged “a comprehensive strategy” to help Mexico beat the cartels.

“This strategy should include plans to expedite funding for resources to Mexico for intelligence, training, and technical assistance programs,” drawing lessons from US efforts to help Colombia beat back the FARC, they said.

© AFP Published at Activist Post with license

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