Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Acting Commissioner Thomas Winkowski, and Assistant Secretary of International Affairs Alan Bersin today met with Mexican Secretary of the Interior Miguel Ángel Osorio Chong and local law enforcement officials in Matamoros, Mexico to discuss border security operations and the ongoing partnership and cooperation between the United States and Mexico to ensure a safe and secure border region.
"The United States and Mexico have taken unprecedented steps in recent years to deepen our cooperation along our shared border," said Secretary Napolitano. "We are committed to working together to support economic competitiveness by creating an environment in which our citizens and businesses continue to feel safe and secure, while reducing violence and increasing security."
Following the meeting, Secretary Napolitano and Secretary Osorio Chong signed an agreement which creates a framework for the bi-national utilization of the U.S.-Mexico Cross Border Security Communications Network. This network will allow participating public safety and law enforcement organizations on both sides of the border to improve their responses to incidents of border violence.
They also highlighted the first ever program of coordinated patrols between the U.S. Border Patrol and Mexico's Federal Police. In April 2013, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and Mexico Secretariat of Government signed a Declaration of Principles Regarding Coordinated Operations to enhance law enforcement cooperation along the border between the U.S. Border Patrol and Mexico's Federal Police. This unprecedented cooperation highlights the U.S. Government's and the Government of Mexico's commitment to co-responsibility for security in the border region and co-management of migration as well as enforcement efforts to detect and confront smuggling activities and transnational criminal organizations.
In Matamoros, Secretary Napolitano and Secretary Osorio Chong met with the South Texas/Tamaulipas Border Violence Prevention Group (BVPG), to discuss the collaboration between the United States and Mexico in addressing areas of mutual concern along our shared border. The BVPG brings together representatives of investigative and interdicting agencies from both countries, offering a forum where diverse agencies can integrate, collaborate, and coordinate. Other BVPGs are also located in the West Texas/Coahuila, Arizona/Sonora, and San Diego/Tijuana corridors.
Tomorrow, Secretary Napolitano, Acting Commissioner Winkowski and Assistant Secretary Bersin will travel to Mexico City where they will meet with members of President Enrique Peña Nieto's cabinet to discuss bi-national efforts to facilitate legitimate trade and travel, enhance information sharing and continue efforts to ensure a safer, more secure and more resilient global supply chain.
For more information, please visit www.dhs.gov.