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International Law

Failed US-Led Drug War Harms Foreign Judicial Systems, Report Says

Posted Feb 12, 2009 7:42 PM CDT
By Martha Neil

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Escalating violence in Mexico and Latin America from a failed U.S.-led war on drugs is putting democratic governments and their judicial systems and police forces at risk, says a report by the Latin American Commission on Drugs and Democracy.

Headed by three former Latin American heads of state, the group calls for a new, less-punitive approach to illegal drugs, including the decriminalization of marijuana use, reports the Wall Street Journal.

However, an unnamed senior U.S. official says that recent reports of exponentially increased violence are a sign that the war on drugs is working, the newspaper writes. "We're taking these guys out. The worst thing you could do is stop now," the official says.

President Barack Obama has not yet appointed a new director of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy. The former director, John Walters, cites improved security in Colombia and says the U.S. hasn't lost the war on drugs, the newspaper reports.

Related coverage:

ABAJournal.com: "Mexican Drug War Infiltrates All of US"

ABAJournal.com: "Former Mexican Drug Czar Got $450K to Keep Traffickers Informed, Authorities Say"

Los Angeles Times: "Phoenix, kidnap-for-ransom capital"

National Public Radio: "Mexico Drug Violence Spurs Worry In U.S."

Wall Street Journal (opinion, sub. req.): "Drug Gangs Have Mexico on the Ropes"

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