The United States continues to face a serious challenge from the large-scale trafficking of drugs and precursor chemicals from abroad. The significant flow of heroin and methamphetamine across the U.S. Southwest Border, combined with continuing movement of cocaine and marijuana, indicate the scale of the challenge we face. Federal agencies, in close collaboration with our international partners, are working to help reduce the supply of drugs by supporting poppy and coca crop eradication; alternative development; air, sea, and land interdiction; law enforcement operations and investigations; and an array of interagency efforts including enhanced threat finance coordination and expanding the use of threat finance cells to deny the illicit proceeds of the drug trade to TCOs.
The leadership of organizations that manufacture and traffic illicit drugs into our communities are largely based abroad. To improve the health and safety of our society, and to help reduce violence and corruption in partner nations, we work closely with authorities in the countries where these organizations operate and support the drug control efforts of major drug source and transit countries. Through technical exchanges and aid, the U.S. helps partner nations build capability and capacity to dismantle transnational criminal groups, eradicate drug crops, and interdict drugs, money, and precursor chemicals. Interdiction not only removes dangerous drugs from the supply chain but also can provide important information and investigatory leads to help identify, target, and dismantle the primary criminal organizations that supply illicit drugs to the United States.
This work also benefits our international partners. Drug trafficking networks severely threaten the security and prosperity of many countries in the Western Hemisphere and other regions. Dismantling these groups allows affected nations to develop stronger institutions better able to withstand the corrosive and corruptive effects of the trafficking organizations. It also addresses the impunity of criminals and corrupt officials - a top priority for improving security in regions like Central and South America.
Like the United States, countries around the world are concerned about the impact of drug use on their citizens and especially on their youth. U.S. international efforts also focus on expanding prevention, treatment, and recovery initiatives and on promoting criminal justice reforms, including alternatives to incarceration, through collaboration with partner nations, multilateral organizations, such as the United Nations Office of Drugs and Crime (UNODC) and the Organization of American States Inter-American Drug Abuse Control Commission (OAS/CICAD), and non-governmental organizations. Promoting access to evidence-based treatment for substance use disorders, sentencing reform, alternatives to incarceration, and other humane and effective interventions and policies helps improve not only the health and wellness of individuals around the world, it helps strengthen communities and reduce the global impact of drugs.