(The Center Square)
The US Senate Foreign Relations Committee wants Mexico and the countries that supply the precursor chemicals for making cheap and potent fentanyl to be held accountable and do more to stop illicit trafficking as drug deaths continue to increase in the United States.
US President Sen. Robert Menendez, DN.J., said more needs to be done in the United States and abroad.
“I urge the Biden administration to take additional action to address the fentanyl epidemic,” he said. “…It is time for the United States to form a multilateral coalition to hold China accountable for failing to meet its international obligation to stop illicit drug trafficking.”
Menendez said China must immediately implement Know-Your-Customer standards to protect against fraud, corruption and money laundering or face penalties. At home, he said the United States needed more high-tech border screening to disrupt open social media sales of fentanyl and improve access to treatment for people with alcohol-related disorders. substance use.
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US Senator James Risch, R-Idaho, said more than 100,000 Americans died from drug overdoses in 2021. He said fentanyl was responsible for nearly 70% of those deaths. Solving the problem will require “very effective international cooperation”, he said.
“Another way to stem this crisis is to identify and cut pipelines,” he said.
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These pipelines contain precursor chemicals from China that Mexican cartels use to make fentanyl, which is then smuggled into the United States, Risch said.
“The same cartels are profiting from and prolonging the illegal immigration crisis caused by the Biden administration’s weak enforcement of border security and immigration controls,” he said.
More than 46 million Americans have substance use disorders, said Dr. Rahul Gupta, director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy.
“America is facing the worst drug crisis we have ever seen,” he said. “It tears at the very fabric of our nation. It presents a direct and growing threat to public health.
Anne Milgram, Administrator of the Drug Enforcement Administration, said the Sinaloa Cartel and the Next Generation Jalisco Cartel are responsible for the majority of illicit fentanyl entering the United States.
She said both cartels buy precursor chemicals from China, which they use to make fentanyl powder. This powder is then pressed into fake prescription pills, Milgram said.
“This is the deadliest threat our country has ever faced,” she said.
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The Mexican Army this week announcement that it seized a fentanyl pill manufacturing facility and the lab with the largest methamphetamine production capacity in Culiacán, Sinaloa. The military found approximately 282 pounds of possible granulated fentanyl, 629,138 probable fentanyl pills, 220 pounds of possible methamphetamine, other chemicals, and 28 organic synthesis reactors.
“Due to the number of reactors, the laboratory is the one with the largest synthetic drug production capacity recorded historically and under the current administration,” the Mexican Secretary of National Defense said in a press release.
Syndicated with permission from The Center Square.