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U.S. and Central America Sign Airport Joint Strategy Security Agreement against Terrorism

By Dialogo
July 18, 2011

The security authorities at Central American airports will receive first-hand information from the United States about potential terrorists or criminal activities that might endanger their facilities, their passengers, or their countries themselves.

This will be part of the agreement that U.S. Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano signed with the Central American defense minsters in Washington, D.C., on 11 July.

The security agreement provides for the exchange of information with the aim of strengthening airport security in the region, Honduran Security Minister Óscar Álvarez announced, according to a report in the Honduran newspaper La Tribuna [The Tribune].

“The head of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Janet Napolitano, has invited all the security secretaries of the Central American region, Belize, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Panama, to sign an agreement on airport security and begin to establish ties between the department and the Central American countries,” he explained.

It is believed that the aim of this joint declaration is to establish security strategies in the region, strengthening the security strategy that links the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and the Central American countries.

“This document establishes an alliance that fuses the interests and wills of brother states in order to prevent and combat threats from transnational crime and threats that endanger citizen security,” Álvarez added, speaking to the Honduran radio station HRN.

The official gave the example that “when someone gets on an airplane, prints are taken, and when he arrives in our country, we’re waiting for him, if he’s a terrorist or a known criminal.”

In this way, with this accord, the countries of the Central American region will also have, in addition to an exchange of technology, access to databases of countries in the region that can make it possible to combat organized crime.