Calderon Considers the Summit a Success Even Without a Declaration

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April 15, 2012
ABC, Spain

English Translation

The president of Mexico, Calderon considered the VI Summit of the Americas “a success” even without a final declaration because, according to him, it allowed them to "contrast ideas" and touch on topics that were not previously on the table.

Calderon congratulated the 33 presidents who attended for supporting the Mexican initiative to create an inter-American system for the fight against organized crime, as stated in one of the three statements on specific issues released at the end of the summit.

In a press conference immediately after Juan Manuel Santos’s at the end of the Summit, the Mexican president announced that Mexico will take the first steps in creating the center and giving it support because “it is in our interest that it works,” he said.

According to Calderon, all of the leaders gave instructions “so that this mechanism is ready by the end of this year” to harmonize actions against the fight against drug trafficking.

The Mexican president also said it was a success that the principle of co-responsibility of all of the countries in the region was adopted by all of the countries of the region, “from the Andes to the United States, passing through Central America.”

Calderon said that this acknowledgement has been asked for for years until finally “today it is assumed that the whole region and the US share responsibility.”

Concretely, he said that the consumption countries such as the US must make “a greater effort” to reduce the use of drugs and the flow of capital for the drugs.

For the moment, he sees it as a show of commitment from the US considering that its president, Barack Obama, “stayed sitting and listening to the approaches of all of the countries, even the most incompatible ones, practically the whole time.”

He also welcomed the agreement reached by the 33 countries to mandate the Organization of American States (OAS) to initiate a study that would allow the review of the current model of the fight against drugs which, in his opinion, “does not assume a failure”, rather, an opportunity to strengthen and improve it.

He explained that this analysis would include supply and demand of the market and would then design measures and public policies against organized crime derived from drug trafficking and aimed at the reconstruction of the social tissue.

On the other hand, Calderon dislikes the thesis that the fight against drugs by the states has failed because they are the ones that, with their frontal combat by police and military, have led to the increase in violence and he justified this by saying that this increase depends on a mixture of circumstances.

This is precisely one of the usual criticisms to his “war against drugs” because since its initiation in 2006, 50,000 people have died in Mexico.

To destabilize this thesis, Calderon mentioned a series of figures that are not attributed to any year in particular. He compared the 18 homicides per 100,000 inhabitants in Mexico with the 70 per 100,000 in Honduras, located in the conflicted Central American corridor for drugs, and the 34 in Colombia, where they are experiencing the oldest armed conflict on the continent.

Finally, Calderon said that what he came to speak about at Cartagena de Indias was the development of the region, not the other interests, in allusion to the support of Argentine sovereignty over the Falkland Islands and the inclusion of Cuba in the next summits and drugs.

View the article in Spanish.

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