Colombia and Peru agree to strengthen border crime fight

Peruvian (e) and Colombian leaders met in Villa de Leyva, near Bogotá – AFP

Colombia and Peru, the world’s two largest cocaine producers, agreed this Thursday to intensify their border cooperation in the fight against transnational crime, during a meeting between Presidents Iván Duque and Pedro Castillo.

The leaders met in Villa de Leyva, near Bogotá, accompanied by their offices and ambassadors. “The defense ministers agreed to share intelligence information and define common strategies to combat transnational crime,” Duque declared after the meeting.

The strategy will focus on drug traffickers as well as smugglers of minerals, fauna and flora, he added. It will also try to dismantle “networks of supplying chemical resources that lead to (environmental) degradation in many of our territories,” added the Colombian president.

Castillo stressed that the agreement will be “crystallized” for the benefit of border residents, “fearful because they are attacked by drug trafficking, delinquency and other common problems.”

Putumayo, one of the departments that make up the 1,626-kilometer border, is one of the Colombian regions with the most drug crops. There are also dissidents from the former FARC guerrilla who did not accept the 2016 peace agreement and continue to profit from drug trafficking.

The presidents also talked about trade, fighting the pandemic and the environment.

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