Nicaragua and Costa Rica Will Coordinate Anti-Drug Fight

Por Dialogo
abril 26, 2011

Nicaraguan and Costa Rican officials agreed on 12 April, in a brief meeting at the border, to establish liaisons in the anti-drug fight and to meet on 5 May in Guatemala, despite the border litigation in which the two countries are in conflict.

“Both parties agreed to have a liaison mechanism on security issues,” announced Mexican vice foreign minister Rubén Beltrán, who participated in the bilateral dialogue, the first in almost three years, as a “facilitator,” along with his Guatemalan counterpart Carlos Morales.

The liaisons in the anti-drug fight, the vice ministers Carlos José Najar (Nicaragua) and Walter Navarro (Costa Rica), will meet in Guatemala on 5 May to continue binational cooperation, according to a joint statement signed at the meeting held at the Peñas Blancas border crossing.

“It’s an important step that we’ve succeeded in setting up liaison instances,” Najar declared, although both sides said that the border dispute continues.

This was “a small, constructive step toward reestablishing trust, but I think that it doesn’t resolve the (border) problem; the problem continues,” the head of the Costa Rican delegation, vice foreign minister Carlos Roverssi, said.

“The fruit of that work is the statement that was just signed. We reiterate Nicaragua’s political will to seek ways to implement the 8 March rulings by the International Court of Justice,” the head of the Nicaraguan delegation, vice foreign minister Orlando Gómez, stated.

The meeting was held at tables set up in the road at the border.

“The message to Central America, the message to the (Latin American) region, is that there is dialogue (…) and there is political will” to continue talking, Beltrán said.

The meeting was aimed at coordinating efforts against the gangs of drug traffickers operating in the isolated and uninhabited border area of forests and wetlands near the Caribbean, where the small territory in dispute between San José and Managua is located.

Like the rest of Central America, the two countries are used as points of passage by gangs of traffickers moving drugs from South America to North America.
The last binational meeting took place on 3 and 4 October 2008 in San José, and the vice foreign ministers participated.