PortandTerminal.com, January 11, 2021
EL PASO – News source Border Report is reporting that Mexico’s Navy has now taken control of the country’s seaports in an attempt to stem overseas trafficking of synthetic drugs and the chemical precursors used to make them.
Previously, the Ministry of Communications and Transportation managed seaports. The Lopez Obrador administration last July announced its intent to put the Navy in charge of maritime ports and the Ministry of Defense in charge of land ports. “It’s done. The (Mexican congress) approved it,” the president said on Sunday. He did not provide details on any operational changes at land ports or airports.
President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said change was needed as civilian port administrators are under increasing threats of “plata o plomo” (lead or silver/bribes or bullets) from organized crime and need the support of the armed forces.
“Mexico’s ports are strategic, and these ports in the Pacific lately have been used by organized crime to introduce synthetic drugs and precursor chemicals for fentanyl – the most dangerous drugs for those who become addicted, generally young people,” Lopez Obrador said during a visit to the port of Manzanillo, Colima.
According to U.S. analysts, all of Mexico’s drug cartels for the past two years have gone into overdrive in their trafficking of methamphetamine and fentanyl to the United States. Not only that, but they’re flooding Mexican northern cities with leftover product, which in turn is leading to increased drug addiction and violence over control of sales outlets.
“Until recently, the cultivation of marijuana and (opium) poppy predominated; now what predominates is fentanyl and these precursors from which they obtain chemical drugs manufactured throughout the country that are popularly known as ‘cocinas’ (kitchens), improvised labs where they cook these very dangerous drugs,” Lopez Obrador said.
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