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U.S. Government Again Certifies Mexico As Ally In Fight Against Drug Trafficking

ISSN:1054-8890
LADB Article ID: 53960
Category/Department: Mexico
Date: 2000-03-15
By: LADB Staff

US President Bill Clinton certified Mexico as an ally in the fight against drug trafficking again this year, but Mexican officials received the decision with little enthusiasm. In its annual exercise on March 1, the administration unconditionally certified Mexico and nine other Latin American countries (see NotiSur, 2000-03-10). As in recent years, the administration went out of its way to praise Mexico's efforts to control the flow of drugs within its borders. "They're spending a higher per-capita percentage basis of their budget on counter-drug activities than the United States is," said Barry McCaffrey, head of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy. But the administration's praise for Mexico failed to ease opposition from the Mexican government and Congress, which renewed its strong criticism of the process. "We don't accept any country judging us," said Deputy Alfredo Phillips Olmedo of the governing Partido Revolucionario Institucional (PRI) and chair of the foreign relations committee (Comision de Relaciones Exteriores) in the lower house. "We roundly reject certification." Mexico accuses US of adopting double standard Sen. Francisco Molina of the center-right Partido Accion Nacional (PAN) criticized the Clinton administration's policies of "double-speak," first praising the government for its anti-drug efforts and later accusing officials of harboring drug traffickers. Mexico had a clear reason to criticize what it perceived as US hypocrisy this year.

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