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Office of the Press Secretary

For Immediate Release February 6, 1998


U.S.-Mexico Binational Drug Strategy

I welcome the release today, with the Government of Mexico, of the U.S.-Mexico Binational Drug Strategy. This Strategy lays out the concrete actions our two governments will take to fulfill the 16 goals set out in our Alliance Against Drugs, including dismantling the criminal organizations that purvey these poisons, sustaining our success in reducing drug demand, and removing obstacles to even closer law enforcement cooperation with Mexico.

This Strategy is guided by the principle that drug trafficking and drug abuse are shared international threats and that we can only defeat them by acting in common, with our other international partners. Our common efforts will uphold the sovereignty and rule of law which drug trafficking organizations seek to erode.

We are making great progress in the fight against drugs, but we cannot let up our efforts now. The Fiscal Year 1999 budget I proposed contains an increase of nearly $500 million, to over $5.8 billion for drug demand reduction, the largest total ever. I have also asked Congress to fund an additional 1,000 law enforcement officers for our borders, so we can slam the door on drugs where they enter. Working with Mexico and our other partners in the hemisphere, we are developing new ways to strengthen multilateral efforts against drugs, to promote the synergies that can bolster our success.

The test of this Strategy will be its results. I am pleased that the U.S.-Mexico High Level Contact Group Against Drugs, chaired on our side by General Barry McCaffrey, is proceeding immediately to develop agreed measures of performance that will tell us if, and how well our Strategy is succeeding, and how to continue strengthening our counternarcotics partnership with Mexico.

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