Tags: Mexico Drugs Central America

Mexico Exporting Its Drug War to Central America

Tuesday, 27 Jul 2010 08:42 AM


Drug cartel violence in Mexico is quickly spilling south into Central America and is threatening to destabilize fragile countries already rife with crime and corruption, The Washington Post reports.

The Northern Triangle of Central America -- Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras -- has long been a major smuggling corridor for contraband heading to the United States. But as Mexican President Felipe Calderón fights a U.S.-backed war against his nation's drug lords, trafficking networks are burrowing deeper into a region with the highest murder rates in the world.

U.S. attention has mostly focused on Mexico. But the homicide rate there -- 14 for every 100,000 residents -- is dwarfed by the murder statistics in the Northern Triangle, where per-capita killings are four times higher and rising.

In El Salvador, the region's most violent country, homicides jumped 37 percent last year, to 71 murders per 100,000 residents, as warring gangs vied for territory and trafficking routes. Police and military officials in El Salvador said cartels are increasingly paying local smugglers in product, rather than cash, driving up cocaine use and the drug dealing and turf battles that come with it.

Read the entire story at washingtonpost.com

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Mexico Drugs Central America
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Tuesday, 27 Jul 2010 08:42 AM
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