Mexican Secretary of Interior, Mouriño and US Secretary of Homeland Security, Chertoff [Source, La Jornada]
On July 18, 2008, the Mexican Secretary of the Interior, Juan Camilo Mouriño Terrazo, met with US Secretary of Homeland Security, Michael Chertoff, to discuss the future of the Mérida Initiative and bilateral relations between the two nations in the fight against organized crime and drug trafficking.
Later Chertoff met with the Mexican security cabinet which includes the secretaries of defense, General Guillermo Galván from the Army and from the Navy, Mariano Francisco Saynes; from the Office of Public Security, Genaro García Luna; as well as the attorney general of the Republic, Eduardo Medina Mora. Chertoff was accompanied by the United States Ambassador to Mexico, Antonio Garza and other members of the Office of Homeland Security.
In a press release from the Office of the Secretary of the Interior of Mexico stated that the tose present in the meetings “…discussed the importance of the Mérida Initiative for bilateral cooperation and the need to move forward with its full implementation in the near future.” The press release also mentioned that within the talks “… the need to continue expanding the cooperation in order to avoid arms trafficking to our [Mexican] territory,” was stressed. On June 27, 2008, the funds for the 2008 fiscal year which fall under the Mérida Initiative were signed by President Bush after being passed in the US Congress.
Recently, Presidents Calderón and Bush spoke by telephone in regards to the initiative and the acceleration of the implementation of the funds, equipment and training that fall within the plan. During the meetings that took place this past Friday in Mexico City, Chertoff supported the movement toward implementation stating that military and police training could begin within a “matter of weeks.”
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