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    Clinton: Money is not enough to prevent drug trafficking

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    Henriette Jacobsen, TheCostaRicaNews.com

    Dollars alone are not enough to help Central American countries taking on drug trafficking organizations in their countries. More effective methods are needed, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said at a press meeting with Costa Rica’s Foreign Minister in Washington D.C.

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    U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and Costa Rican Foreign Minister René Castro smile for a photo after their joint press conference at the U.S. Department of State in Washington, D.C., on March 4, 2011.

    Hillary Clinton and Costa Rica’s Foreign Minister, Rene Castro, met in the White House to discuss human rights and security issues in Central America on March 4. After the meeting, Castro and Clinton stressed the importance of working together to take on the transnational drug trafficking organizations that destroy lives and destabilize societies. Clinton said the United States is deepening its partnerships on regional security issues with Mexico, Central America, and Colombia, and Costa Rica plays a major role in that.

    And I know from meeting with President Chinchilla that there is so much Costa Rica is already doing, but they face the same problems as their neighbors,” the Secretary of State said.

    Clinton was then asked by reporters whether the United States is considering increasing the funds for anti-narcotic efforts in Central America. The Secretary of State stressed the United States is committed to improve the security situation in Central America through a number of different channels to support the efforts that governments are undertaking on their own behalf. Later this month President Obama will visit El Salvador, Chile, and Brazil to discuss, among other things, security issues in the region. There will also be a System for the Central American Integration meeting later this spring as well as an Organization of American States meeting about regional security in June.

    We do have a commitment of significant dollars, but I have to tell you that it is our experience that dollars alone are not enough,” Clinton said. She added that the most cost effective way of helping a government protect itself is working to train police officers and other law enforcement officials. Then it will be easier for the governments to better organize their assets, to work to support independent judiciaries, to assist in patrolling coastlines, and to provide vetting programs so that funds coming in and out of countries can be traced.

    Clinton said that this issue certainly is about resources “But it’s also about supporting governments like Costa Rica’s, that has a track record of knowing how best to use those resources, and helping other countries apply resources in a more effective way to get the results they seek.”

    Foreign Minister Castro said Costa Rica is willing to work both at the bilateral and regional level with the United States against the organized crime. At the end of March, Costa Rica will be hosting a multilateral meeting with France, Netherlands, Guatemala, Belize, Dominican Republic, the United Kingdom and the United States about how to work against organized crime in the Caribbean.

    Anyone can contact a drug addiction helpline if they need help in dealing with situations involving drug abuse.Henriette Jacobsen, TheCostaRicaNews.com

    Dollars alone are not enough to help Central American countries taking on drug trafficking organizations in their countries. More effective methods are needed, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said at a press meeting with Costa Rica’s Foreign Minister in Washington D.C.

    U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and Costa Rican Foreign Minister René Castro smile for a photo after their joint press conference at the U.S. Department of State in Washington, D.C., on March 4, 2011.

    Hillary Clinton and Costa Rica’s Foreign Minister, Rene Castro, met in the White House to discuss human rights and security issues in Central America on March 4. After the meeting, Castro and Clinton stressed the importance of working together to take on the transnational drug trafficking organizations that destroy lives and destabilize societies. Clinton said the United States is deepening its partnerships on regional security issues with Mexico, Central America, and Colombia, and Costa Rica plays a major role in that.

    And I know from meeting with President Chinchilla that there is so much Costa Rica is already doing, but they face the same problems as their neighbors,” the Secretary of State said.

    Clinton was then asked by reporters whether the United States is considering increasing the funds for anti-narcotic efforts in Central America. The Secretary of State stressed the United States is committed to improve the security situation in Central America through a number of different channels to support the efforts that governments are undertaking on their own behalf. Later this month President Obama will visit El Salvador, Chile, and Brazil to discuss, among other things, security issues in the region. There will also be a System for the Central American Integration meeting later this spring as well as an Organization of American States meeting about regional security in June.

    We do have a commitment of significant dollars, but I have to tell you that it is our experience that dollars alone are not enough,” Clinton said. She added that the most cost effective way of helping a government protect itself is working to train police officers and other law enforcement officials. Then it will be easier for the governments to better organize their assets, to work to support independent judiciaries, to assist in patrolling coastlines, and to provide vetting programs so that funds coming in and out of countries can be traced.

    Clinton said that this issue certainly is about resources “But it’s also about supporting governments like Costa Rica’s, that has a track record of knowing how best to use those resources, and helping other countries apply resources in a more effective way to get the results they seek.”

    Foreign Minister Castro said Costa Rica is willing to work both at the bilateral and regional level with the United States against the organized crime. At the end of March, Costa Rica will be hosting a multilateral meeting with France, Netherlands, Guatemala, Belize, Dominican Republic, the United Kingdom and the United States about how to work against organized crime in the Caribbean.

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