Cornyn Hosts Key Mexican Officials

In: All News   Posted 09/05/2003

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator John Cornyn met with Mexican Foreign Secretary Luis Derbez, Undersecretary for North American Affairs Geronimo Gutierrez and Mexico’s U.S. Ambassador Juan Jose Bremer to address immigration reform, border security, trade and water issues. Discussed at the meeting was a new effort underway to install a system for advanced passenger information exchanges between the Government of Mexico and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. The system, known as APIS (Advanced Passenger Information System), will allow the rapid interchange of airline passenger lists between both governments to detect any problematic travelers and speed transit for law-abiding passengers. The leaders also discussed the U.S. draft United Nations resolution that would broaden peacekeeping efforts in Iraq and expand the number of troops from other nations. Mexico is a member of the U.N.’s Security Council."I am convinced that the challenges of cross-border contraband and human smuggling, narcotics traffic, and terrorism are inextricably linked, and must be addressed,” said Cornyn, a member of the Immigration, Border Security and Citizenship subcommittee. “I appreciate the efforts of Secretary Derbez and the Mexican government to address these critical issues, and for making great strides to reduce crime on both sides of the border.” Sen. Cornyn met with Derbez and Gutierrez during a trip to Mexico City in August, as well as Secretary of the Interior Santiago Creel to discuss similar issues and concerns. While in Mexico City, Cornyn also attended a dinner hosted by U.S. Ambassador Tony Garza with government, business and academic leaders from the U.S. and Mexico. Cornyn met with Foreign Ministry Undersecretaries Geronimo Gutierrez and Alfonso de Maria y Campos on water issues. Other meeting topics included crime and extraditions, law enforcement and child custody and welfare cases."My visit to Mexico City was an important step in restarting the dialogue between our two nations on critical issues such as immigration and border security,” Sen. Cornyn said. “Our ongoing meetings provide an opportunity to move toward fruitful and concrete reform of current immigration policy and will result in improved border security. I believe it’s critical that we continue to build good relations between the United States and Mexico. If we increase trade and set good immigration policies, both countries will benefit from the additional prosperity that will result.” the Mexican delegation was in D.C. to review bilateral immigration and security issues. Secretary Derbez and the delegation met with Secretary of State Colin Powell, U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft, Commerce Secretary Don Evans and U.S. Trade Representative Robert Zoellick, as well as select members of Congress. in July, Cornyn introduced the Border Security and Immigration Reform Act of 2003, S. 1387, to address the need for better border and homeland security while acknowledging the important contributions that immigrants make to our country.