Terrorism and the US-Mexico Border

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  • The San Antonio Express News reports that a Somalian, once based in Mexico, is suspected of smuggling members of an East African terrorist cell into the United States, according to federal documents reportedly obtained by the newspaper. According to the article, Ahmed Muhammed Dhakane, a Somalian who entered Brownsville, Texas, through Mexico in 2008, is charged with links to two East African groups that the U.S. classifies as terrorist organizations. The San Antonio Express quotes a Justice Department memo, which states that Dhakane “admits that he knowingly believed he was smuggling violent jihadists into the United States,” although so far Dhakane has denied this charge. So far, there have been no documented cases of suspected terrorists entering the U.S. via the Mexico border.
  • Costa Rica is hosting a summit about a narcotics treaty signed in 2003, known as the San Jose Agreement, reports local paper Prensa Libre. The treaty is aimed at fighting drug trafficking in the Caribbean, and has been signed and ratified by Belize, the United States, France, Guatemala, the Dominican Republic, the Netherlands, and Costa Rica, all of which are attending the meeting. Nicaragua, which has signed the treaty but hasn’t ratified it, is also attending. The agreement does not enforce any specific goals but rather asks the signatory countries to contribute whatever resources are avaliable. The France, the U.S. and the Netherlands offer technological and naval support, while Central American nations allow drug-interdiction vessels to enter their waters.
  • Brazil and Bolivia are hosting a two-day meeting in La Paz about increased anti-narcotics aid, reports Bolivia’s La Razon. Tuesday, Bolivia’s Minister of the Interior and Brazil’s Minister of Justice will tour a coca-eradication program, while technical committees are scheduled to discuss policy in La Paz. The two countries first announced a joint anti-drug plan in early February, which will involve increased border patrols and more technical support from Brazil, including helicopters and computer training for Bolivia’s police.
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