Tags: Honduras | crime | politics | drugs

Honduras Leader Says Drug Cartels as 'Aggressive' as Jihadists

Thursday, 02 Oct 2014 07:29 AM

Drug cartels are as "aggressive", and cause as much destruction, as jihadist groups like Islamic State, the president of violence-wracked Honduras said Thursday in an interview published in Spain.

"What causes most of the violence in Honduras is related to the production of drugs in South America and its massive consumption in the US. Unfortunately we are on the smuggling path," Honduras President Juan Orlando Hernandez told daily newspaper El Pais.

"The drug cartels, organised crime, are as aggressive in their criminal behaviour and their deeds are similar to those carried out by fundamentalist groups like ISIS," he added using an acronym used to refer to the militant group Islamic State of Iraq and Syria.

Hernandez, who took office in January after winning on a pledge to be tough on crime, wrapped up a three-day visit to Spain on Wednesday.

Honduras, a key transit point for drugs, has the world's highest murder rate -- 79 per 100,000 in 2013, according to monitors at the country's National University.

Drug-related killings have increased in recent years since Mexico's drug cartels expanded into the country, enlisting local street gangs and using the country's Caribbean coast to transport South American cocaine to the United States.

Tens of thousands of unaccompanied minors from Central America, many from Honduras, crossed into the United States through Mexico earlier this year in an unprecedented surge.

Some were fleeing recruitment attempts and death threats from vicious gangs or trying to reunite with family members.

Hernandez has repeatedly said that Honduras is deserving of US aid similar to programmes that funded anti-drug operations in Colombia and Mexico.

"We need the participation of the US. As I told leaders in Washington: 'If Central America remains turbulent, violent, without opportunities, without economic growth, it is a huge risk for the United States,'" he said.

"By contrast, if Central America is prosperous, peaceful, with opportunities, it is a great investment," he added.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

© AFP 2017

 
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Drug cartels are as aggressive , and cause as much destruction, as jihadist groups like Islamic State, the president of violence-wracked Honduras said Thursday in an interview published in Spain. What causes most of the violence in Honduras is related to the production of...
Honduras, crime, politics, drugs
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2014-29-02
Thursday, 02 Oct 2014 07:29 AM
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