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Press Release - Governor Bill Richardson and Chihuahua Governor Jose Reyes Baeza Agree to Measures to Fight Border Violence

May 14, 2007

(Santa Fe, NM) – Today, Governor Bill Richardson and Governor Jose Reyes Baeza of the Mexican state of Chihuahua agreed to measures to fight violence on the border that has claimed the lives of at least six people in the Mexican town of Palomas, just across from Columbus, New Mexico. According to law enforcement officials, the violence during the past two weeks appears to be part of a drug war that has escalated on the Mexican side of the border.

"Governor Baeza and I agreed the New Mexico State Police and the Chihuahua State Police will continue work together to boost our border presence and coordinate our efforts to stop, what we believe is drug-related violence," stated Governor Bill Richardson. "We will work together to push drug-related violence out of our border communities."

As a result of the conversation, the New Mexico State Police will increase its presence and patrols in and around the town of Columbus, New Mexico and Governor Baeza has agreed to intensify the presence of the Chihuahua State Police on the Mexican side of the border. Both will continue to monitor the situation. The NM State Police is also working closely with US Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Luna County Police Department and other law enforcement in the area.

Last week, Governor Richardson ordered the New Mexico State Police to increase patrols in and around the town of Columbus and joined US Customs agents to form a roadblock in the town of Columbus to check every vehicle going back into Palomas, Mexico.

Law enforcement officials estimate that as much as 80% of the narcotics that comes across southern border is directed by Mexican gangs. Gangs are also considered responsible for a significant part of the distribution while in the United States.

Bill Richardson, Press Release - Governor Bill Richardson and Chihuahua Governor Jose Reyes Baeza Agree to Measures to Fight Border Violence Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/294546

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