Costa Rica Calls for Regional Anti-Drug Efforts

Costa Rica’s President, Laura Chinchilla, said Central American governments should increase co-operation to combat the penetration of the drug trade in the region.

Chinchilla said that althoughthe region’s governments have had some success in interdiction efforts, “we are seeing more drugs in our economies,” reports the Associated Press.

The president stated that Costa Rica was also hit by the narcotics business, saying that “the problem, we have to recognize, is growing in all the region, and Costa Rica is not the exception.”

Chinchilla said she plans to raise the issue in a meeting of Central American presidents next month in Guatemala. Her comments come days after the massacre of 27 workers at a farm in north Guatemala, attributed to Mexican drug gang the Zetas.

Central American governments have agreed on a regional security plan, for which they plan to seek more than $900 million in aid.

On U.S. President Barack Obama’s trip to El Salvador in May, he promoted increased international cooperation in the fight against drug traffickers and gangs through his Central American Citizen Security Partnership.