The Biden administration is set to broker a deal with Mexico to crack down on fentanyl, NBC News reported Monday.
The agreement would mean that Mexico will target the chemicals coming into the country to make fentanyl and the clandestine labs used to synthesize the drug and the U.S. will hold up its end of the bargain by countering arms trafficking going south, according to NBC News, which cited two sources familiar with the deal. Fentanyl is largely made by cartels in Mexico using chemicals made in China, according to the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA). (RELATED: EXCLUSIVE: Here’s What GOP Reps Will Discuss At The Upcoming Northern Border Crisis Hearing)
Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador and other top officials in Mexico have recently denied his country’s role in fentanyl production.
“Here, we do not produce fentanyl, and we do not have consumption of fentanyl,” López Obrador said March 9 during a press conference.
“So far, there is no record of production or synthesis of fentanyl in Mexico,” Mexico’s top diplomat for North American affairs Roberto Velasco Álvarez also recently said.
Former DEA Special Operations Division chief Derek Maltz recently told the Daily Caller News Foundation that Mexico’s statements are part of an ongoing “deception campaign.”
“They’re putting out false information to try to garner support,” Maltz said. “It’s a real indicator for all Americans that we can’t rely on these soft-on-crime, corrupt leaders in Mexico to save American kids.”
Federal authorities along the southern border seized roughly 11,000 pounds of fentanyl between October 2022 and February 2023 and more than 14,000 pounds of the synthetic narcotic in all of fiscal year 2022, according to U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) statistics. Fentanyl is largely responsible for the more than 100,000 overdose deaths that occurred in 2021 in the U.S., according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
The White House didn’t respond to a request for comment.
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