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Secretary Napolitano and Mexican Secretary of Public Safety Genaro García Luna Sign Declaration of Principles on Cooperative Efforts to Secure the U.S.-Mexico Border and Combat Transnational Threats

Release Date: 
February 18, 2010

For Immediate Release
Office of the Press Secretary
Contact: 202-282-8010

Mexico City—U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Janet Napolitano and Mexican Secretary of Public Safety (SSP) Genaro García Luna today signed a Declaration of Principles of Cooperation on joint efforts to secure the U.S.-Mexico border and share information about transnational threats while streamlining legitimate travel and trade.

“The success of our efforts to crack down on criminal organizations and others who threaten the safety of our citizens requires close collaboration between the United States and Mexico ,” said Secretary Napolitano. “This declaration will allow us to better protect both nations against violent drug cartels and transnational smuggling of drugs, cash and firearms while facilitating legitimate travel and trade.”

“This agreement is an example of the cooperation and mutual understanding regarding security issues between both countries, and between DHS and SSP,” said Secretary García Luna. “The working visit of Secretary Napolitano is a consequence of the strong relationship between both institutions, and of their commitment with the rule of law, and the fight against organized crime and violence.”

The declaration signed today builds on, and expands, Mérida Initiative programs as well as current coordinated efforts between U.S. Customs and Border Protection, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement and the Mexican Federal Police and outlines principles to enhance border security, including:

  • Intelligence-driven operations with precise, targeted outcomes—improving public safety and security along the border through DHS-SSP coordinated operations and investigations and focusing additional Mexican resources to combat criminal activity along the border;
  • Cooperation focused on increasing bilateral situational awareness of threats—enhancing the production of reliable criminal activity reports to improve both nations’ ability to share real-time information about arrests, seizures, investigations and relevant trends and threats posed by criminal organizations along the border;
  • Operations designed to deny access by criminal organizations between ports of entry—enhancing coordinated surveillance capabilities; coordinating short- and long-term deployment of personnel, infrastructure and technology; coordinating efforts to identify illegal crossing points and targeting associates of criminal organizations;
  • Enforcement that effectively prevents criminals from exploiting border entry points—sharing intelligence information on criminal activities, structures and strategies, and collaborating to develop strategies that limit transnational mobility of criminal associates and their family members to the extent authorized by law; Ø
  • Sufficient personnel, infrastructure and technology needed to sustain bilateral efforts—coordinating operational plans and investigative efforts to facilitate enforcement goals and sustain bilateral cooperative efforts based on available intelligence.

Secretary Napolitano also met yesterday with Mexican Interior Secretary Fernando Gómez-Mont to sign a protocol to enhance and streamline coordination on public communication in the case of a national security situation or disaster, and improve day-to-day exchanges of public affairs information to enhance mutual awareness and prompt coordination.

In the past year, Secretary Napolitano has made several trips to the Southwest border and Mexico to survey operations, coordinate with state and local law enforcement, and meet with Mexican officials—and has signed several agreements with Mexican officials to bolster cross-border cooperation to crack down on transnational criminal activity.

For more information, visit www.dhs.gov.

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