Mexico hopes to convince President-Elect Obama to embrace open migration and change his stand on construction of the border fence

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Foreign News Report

The National Association of Former Border Patrol Officers (NAFBPO) extracts and condenses the material that follows from Mexican and Central and South American on-line media sources on a daily basis. You are free to disseminate this information, but we request that you credit NAFBPO as being the provider.

 Saturday 11/8/08

El Porvenir (Monterrey, Nuevo Leon) 11/8/08
Mexican Secretary of Exterior Relations, Patricia Espinosa Cantellano, said that when Barak Obama becomes president, Mexico will reassert its contention that his agenda include an immigration agreement as a priority.  In addition, other aspects of dialogue to be addressed are the fight against organized crime and the economic competitiveness with other regions.  In a press conference, she assured that President Felipe Calderon is confident that with Obama’s presidency a migration agreement will finally be reached that permits both nations a flow of migration that is legal, safe and orderly.  Espinosa also said that the Mexican government hopes the US president-elect changes his position on the construction of the border fence.  She pointed out that Calderon’s government will continue to raise the issue, respectfully but firmly, that the border fence does not correspond to the friendly relations and and the partnership that exists between Mexico and the US.  Pointing out the contributions Mexicans make to the US economy and society that benefits both sides, she stated, “we hope that with the new administration we can continue working in the sense of the importance of the border becoming a common area of opportunities and that we concentrate on efforts that take us to better levels of well being.”  She added that, without a doubt, the big challenge is to succeed in delivering the message to the US people in order to obtain the consensus necessary to promote migratory reform. 
Entorno a Tamaulipas (Tamaulipas) 11/8/08
–  Federal Police in Reynosa, Tamaulipas, arrested Jaime “El Hummer” Gonzalez Duran, one of Mexico’s “most wanted” and the alleged founder of the militant group of hit men known as Los Zetas.  “El Hummer” is closely associated with Heriberto “El Lazca” Lazcano, leader of the Gulf Cartel.  Gonzalez Duran had served in the Mexican Army and Air Force, but deserted in 1999 to form the “execution arm” of the cartel with “El Lazca” and Arturo Guzman.
–  Mexican Secretary of Exterior Affairs, Patricia Espinosa, reported that for the first time “in migratory history” the flow of her countrymen into the US has declined 40% in the past three months.  She attributed the drop to the economic situation in the US and the risk of crossing the border, adding also that “the Border Patrol and immigration department, according to information by the Mexican government, has carried out 60 raids against Mexicans from January to September 2008.”
El Universal (Mexico City) 11/8/08
The Mexican Army made the largest and most important seizure of arms in history in Reynosa, Tamaulipas.  Searching a safe house, they discovered 414 firearms, over a half million rounds of ammo, 167 grenades, 67 bulletproof vests, a LAW anti-armor rocket launcher, and 2 grenade launchers.  The firearms consisted of assault rifles, pistols, P90 submachine guns and 7 Barrett .50 caliber rifles.
El Heraldo (Tegucigalpa, Honduras) , Prensa Libre  (Guatemala City, Guatemala)  11/8/08
Jorge Bustamante, a UN Immigrants’ Human Rights official, compared the detention of undocumented aliens in the United States with the ones that the Nazi secret police carried out against the Jews.  At the 5th International Congress on Migration & Development, held at the (Jesuit) Rafael Landivar University in Guatemala City, Bustamante said: ” It happens quite frequently, that which Hollywood movies show us as Gestapo repression, the Nazi German secret police, against the Jews, assaulting them in their houses, that, ladies and gentlemen, is happening in the United States.”
El Nuevo Diario  (Managua, Nicaragua)  11/8/08
Police in Panama City, Panama, went to a “false business establishment” Thursday and found 734 kilos of cocaine hidden behind a false wall. Then, police searched two trucks on the premises and found that each one had a thousand kilos of cocaine stashed within a false bottom. A third container was being searched and the find could surpass three metric tons. Four Panamanians and one Colombian were arrested.
La Prensa Grafica  (San Salvador, El Salvador)  11/8/08
Headline: “Central America expects to influence Barack Obama’s agenda” 
“Central America was glad of the Democratic candidate’s victory in the U.S. presidential elections and sees it as an opportunity for change in the way of dealing with high priority items such as security, migration and commerce.”  The Costa Rican (President) Oscar Arias considers it “marvelous”, while the Nicaraguan one, Daniel Ortega, labeled it “a miracle” and the Honduran Manuel Zelaya as a “ray of hope for humanity.”
They all trust that Washington’s agenda for the region might change course, since it has long considered it as the back yard of the United States.
Sunday 11/9/08

El Universal (Mexico City) 11/9/08
–  During the present administration of Mexican President Calderon, more than 25,000 firearms have been seized from organized crime, equivalent  to the supply for 42 battalions of the Mexican Army.  The figures are from a report on the fight against narcotraffic for the period between December 1, 2006 and October 31, 2008.  The report also addressed the financial blows to the cartels during the past 23 months, citing seizures of 69.2 metric tons of cocaine with a market value of $865 million US.  The same period also yielded 3.407 metric tons of marihuana with an estimated value of $272  million US.
–  Mexican military drivers assigned to chauffeur high-ranking officers are to receive special training in evasive tactics in the event of an aggressive encounter with organized criminals.  The training will include, among other maneuvers, 180 and 360 degree turns to prevent ambush attacks from other vehicles or armed groups.  The only requirement to take the course, other than knowing how to drive, is a recommendation of trust by a commanding officer.
–  With the arrest of Jaime “El Hummer” Gonzalez Duran, the Reynosa, Tamaulipas, area of operations — one of the principal bastions of the Gulf Cartel — is left without a leader.  Authorities hope the capture of “El Hummer” and the arrest last week of his lieutenant, Antonio “El Amarillo” Galarza Corona, will mean a drastic decline in the violence in Reynosa.
–  [Following are excerpts translated from a report to El Universal titled, US: migrants in resistance.]
At least 12 million people hope for a miracle: their legalization.  In the Chicago Consulate, they recommend not signing any deportation document.  For a few “in resistance,” like Flor Crisostomo, an indigenous Zapotec from Ocotlan de Morelos, Oaxaca, the US election of November 4th means so much.  Barak Obama is her hope and, she says, the hope of 12 million undocumenteds in that country.  Flor was arrested in the first massive raid made by US immigration authorities against illegal workers in 2006 and since then she has become an activist for the rights of “the undocumented community.”  She spent 30 hours under arrest, but she never signed her deportation.
The Protection consul (sic) in Chicago, Ionna Navarette, says: “We recommend that they not sign until contacting a lawyer or the consulate, because they can fight the deportation.  Nevertheless, at the beginning of this year, [Flor] did not keep them from giving her a deportation date of January 28, 2008.  Since then, she has spent more than nine months hoping for a miracle: her legalization and an end to the “massive deportation and separation of families promoted by the government of George W. Bush.”  Her refuge is the Adalberto Methodist sanctuary in a Puerto Rican neighborhood of Chicago, Illinois, that also sponsored Elvira Arellano, a Mexican activist who was separated from her US citizen son when immigration authorities deported her to Mexico in August, 2007.
Flor Cristostomo crossed as a wet (sic) in 2000, leaving behind her mother and children.  “We must have the courage to teach our children to defend themselves,” says Flor, seated on her bed in Chicago.  She holds the only photo she has of her three children and assures with a furious cry: “I only finished secondary [school] and I tell them to study because the only satisfaction that I want is not to have to bow my head to any government.”
Monday 11/10/08
El Universal (Mexico City) 11/10/08
An armed commando unit in 15 vehicles abducted 24 field workers from a farm in Sinaloa.  At least 30 armed men dressed in dark uniforms invaded the camp firing assault rifles in the air and made more than 100 of the workers lie on the ground while they took 24 away, one by one, to the vehicles.  Among those abducted was one 16-year-old.  Authorities are investigating.
Norte (Cd. Juarez, Chihuahua) 11/10/08
Business in Ciudad Juarez has deteriorated greatly due to the insecurity engendered by kidnappings and extortions.  Many businessmen have decided to take their families to safer places, leaving commercial areas abandoned.
El Diario en Linea (Chihuahua) 11/10/08
A municipal policeman in Aquiles Serdan, Chihuahua, shot and killed a 19-year-old after the youth failed to heed an order to be inspected and was about to throw a rock at the officer.
-end of report-

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