Napolitano lauds information-sharing with Mexico

Sep 18, 2012, 7:10 AM | Updated: 7:10 am
...

WASHINGTON — U.S. and Mexican officials said Monday that intelligence sharing between the two countries is leading to a more secure and “more modern and efficient border.”

Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano and Mexican Interior Secretary Alejandro Poire, speaking together at a luncheon in Washington, said that newfound collaboration between law-enforcement agencies paid off recently in the arrest of a Mexican drug cartel leader, among other victories.

“We’re sharing more info with each other than ever before,” Napolitano said at the Wilson Center luncheon. “We’ve increased the number of intelligence analysts working on the border and established a border enforcement security task force in Mexico City.”

Poire pointed to recent arrests of drug cartel leaders in Mexico that have been helped by the newfound cooperation between the two countries.

While he said a special unit of Mexico’s navy led the operation that resulted in the arrests, Poire said it entailed “collaboration from other federal agencies, the federal police and the army and, in particular, collaboration and intelligence sharing with U.S. agencies.”

“Thanks to collaboration with U.S. agencies, we can now speak about places like Tijuana and Ciudad Juarez as being places which have actually diminished … crime rates,” Poire said.

The cooperation has led to improvements north of the border, too, said Napolitano, noting that it plays a role in the fight against human smuggling along with “the manpower, the technology, the infrastructure that the U.S. has added to the border.”

Napolitano said illegal border crossings are at the lowest point since the 1970s. The number of people caught by U.S. Border Patrol trying to cross the Southwest border illegally has fallen every year since 2005, to 327,577 in fiscal 2011, according a report this month from the Department of Homeland Security.

Both Poire and Napolitano said there are benefits beyond law enforcement as well. They pointed to programs like the Global Entry program operated by U.S. Customs and Border Protection, which is designed to expedite security screenings for preapproved travelers.

Those sorts of initiatives not only help harried travelers, but can lead to improved trade between the two countries, they said.

Poire said the trend toward a closer relationship has been developing over the past decade, and that it should continue.

“Over the last 15 or 20 years we have been gradually not only deepening some of the areas of collaboration – trade, investment – but also coming to terms with the fact that our security challenges are shared security challenges,” he said.

Napolitano said the countries’ previous reluctance to address transborder issues has begun to thaw, and it’s beginning to pay off for both nations.

“I think there had developed a tradition of law enforcement on both sides not trusting law enforcement on the other side,” she said.

“We have had to work to break down those walls and to really tell law enforcement in the field that we value cooperation and information sharing and we are looking for ways to do it.”

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Pass it along to the KTAR News team here.

Arizona News

(Arizona Renaissance Festival Photo)...
Wills Rice

Arizona Renaissance Festival returns to East Valley on Saturday

Arizona's 35th Annual Renaissance Festival returns to Arizona on Saturday with a medieval 16th-century European village atmosphere.
6 hours ago
(Facebook Photo/Phoenix Police Department)...
KTAR.com

Man dies making left turn after driver runs red light in Phoenix

A man was killed in Phoenix on Friday after a driver ran a red light, striking the victim's car in an intersection, authorities said.
1 day ago
(Pexels Photo)...
Kevin Stone

Arizona Gov. Katie Hobbs creates panel to study teacher retention problem

Arizona Gov. Katie Hobbs issued an executive order Thursday aimed at figuring out ways to keep teachers in classrooms.
1 day ago
Protesters march Saturday, Jan. 28, 2023, in Memphis, Tenn., over the death of Tyre Nichols, who di...
Associated Press

6th officer fired after beating death of Tyre Nichols

A sixth Memphis officer was fired Friday after an internal police investigation showed he violated multiple department policies in the violent arrest of Tyre Nichols.
1 day ago
(Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)...
Associated Press

Denver Court throws out Wyoming doctor’s pill convictions

A federal appeals court on Friday threw out the convictions of a doctor accused of overprescribing powerful pain medication and ordered a new trial for him.
1 day ago
(Photo illustration by Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images)...
Associated Press

$700M Powerball prize latest in string of giant jackpots

There is another giant lottery jackpot up for grabs Saturday night, the latest in a string of big prizes enticing players to plunk down $2.
1 day ago

Sponsored Articles

...
Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

Company looking for oldest air conditioner and wants to reward homeowner with new one

Does your air conditioner make weird noises or a burning smell when it starts? If so, you may be due for an AC unit replacement.
...
Fiesta Bowl Foundation

Celebrate 50 years of Vrbo Fiesta Bowl Parade magic!

Since its first production in the early 1970s, the Vrbo Fiesta Bowl Parade presented by Lerner & Rowe has been a staple of Valley traditions, bringing family fun and excitement to downtown Phoenix.
(Photo via MLB's Arizona Fall League / Twitter)...
Arizona Fall League

Top prospects to watch at this year’s Arizona Fall League

One of the most exciting elements of the MLB offseason is the Arizona Fall League, which began its 30th season Monday.
Napolitano lauds information-sharing with Mexico