Cartels and the U.S. Heroin Epidemic: Combating Drug Violence and Public Health Crisis, Testimony of Daniel Foote, Deputy Assistant Secretary, Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs, Before the Subcommittee on the Western Hemisphere, Transnational Crime, Civilian Security, Democracy, Human Rights, and Global Women's Issues, Committee on Foreign Relations, U.S. Senate, One Hundred Fourteenth Congress, Second Session, May 26, 2016   [open pdf - 223KB]

"The flow of illicit narcotics across our shared border with Mexico threatens citizen security in both countries. Recognizing that we have a shared responsibility to address common challenges, in 2007, the United States forged a comprehensive security partnership with Mexico. Through the Merida Initiative, we work in partnership with Mexico to build the capacity of Mexican institutions to counter organized crime, uphold the rule of law, and protect our shared border from the movement of illicit drugs, money, and goods. The need for effective collaboration is now more important than ever. Heroin and fentanyl-laced heroin is a public health crisis in the United States, and Mexican drug trafficking organizations are the primary suppliers of heroin to the United States. We must aggressively respond to this growing threat in concert with our broader work through the Merida Initiative to counter all illicit drugs and to end the impunity with which trafficking organizations are able to operate, putting their leaders in jail, seizing their weapons, drugs, and money, and dismantling their illicit businesses."

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