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Hard Talk: Is Mexico's Security Situation Improving?

November 05, 2014

Eduardo Guerrero - Yes: Violence and Murder Are Decreasing in Mexico

When Mexican President Felipe Calderón left office in 2012, the nation’s war on the drug cartels had already claimed 60,000 lives. Now, two years into the presidency of his successor, Enrique Peña Nieto, security conditions are still far from praiseworthy, but have improved in several key areas.

Homicides, the most reliable indicator for measuring public security in Mexico, have steadily decreased over the past two years. According to Mexico’s Insituto Nacional de Estadística y Geografía (National Institute of Statistics and Geography—INEGI) the number of murders decreased...

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Alejandro Hope - No: Mexican Homicide and Crime Rates Remain High

As a presidential candidate, Enrique Peña Nieto promised “adjustments,” rather than any major changes, to the security strategy of the outgoing administration—and that is precisely what he has delivered as president. While there have been subtle—and not so subtle—shifts from the policies pursued by former President Felipe Calderón, there has not been a clear break with the past.

The same overall strategy is producing the same grim results. While homicides have decreased by 25 percent from a peak during Calderón’s presidency in 2011, they remain at staggeringly high levels: last year...

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