26-Nov-2010 Source: US Embassy in Mexico
The United States Department of State announced today the delivery of three Black Hawk UH-60M helicopters to the Government of Mexicoâ€™s Federal Police force (SSP). The helicopters, valued at $64 million, mark the first Merida Initiative aviation delivery to the SSP and will compliment the SSPâ€™s current air fleet by expanding law enforcement operations, allowing for rapid response and increased mobility of law enforcement personnel, provide access to remote and hard to reach regions, and expanding interdiction operations to target illicit activities.
In a bi-national ceremony at Mexicoâ€™s Iztapalapa Federal Police force base that marks the first Merida Initiative aviation delivery to the SSP, Ambassador to Mexico Carlos Pascual said, â€œIt is important to recognize that, despite the significant threat transnational organized crimes pose to public security, we also have tools in our arsenal to fight back. Our bilateral relationship, while intangible, is one such tool. These helicopters are another. We will jointly continue to put these tools to best use, and it is through these combined efforts that we will turn the tide against the cartels and provide greater security to both our countries.â€
Under the Merida Initiative, the United States has delivered more than $310 million in equipment and training to date with plans to deliver an additional $495 million in equipment and training by the end of 2011.
The Government of Mexico has committed tremendous resources to combating transnational criminal organizations, and the support delivered by the U.S. today under the Merida Initiative will serve to strengthen the shared goals of citizen safety, security, and respect for the rule of law.