Costa Rica and El Salvador, two countries highly affected by drug-related violence in recent years, have urged the United Nations to help fight drug cartels and organized crime.

“Our region has become prey to malevolent geopolitics,” Costa Rican President Laura Chinchilla Miranda told the General Assembly’s annual general debate.

“As a result of our location between the largest centres of production and demand in the world, we have become a target to the dynamic of death that they both create, and we must bear the burden of extraordinary material, institutional and human costs What for the main perpetrators of these atrocities are mere ‘collateral damages,’ for Central Americans represent extreme challenges and deep wounds.”

El Salvador’s President Mauricio Funes echoed his Costa Rican counterpart’s call for international support and stressed that drug trafficking affects not just Latin America but every country where drugs are obtained illegally.

“The international community must understand that it also suffers from this problem,” he said. “There is no nation in the world where there hasn’t been a drug consumer that has obtained drugs from the hand of criminal drug networks.”

He also said that Central American countries will continue to combat drug trafficking by strengthening their institutions, seeking transparency in their security bodies, and helping young people stay away from gangs. But he stressed that there would be no progress without the leadership of consumer countries, and called on the United States to take immediate measures.

“The battle against organized crime is everyone’s fight and in this sense, I would like to make a special appeal to the United Sates so that it assumes a resolute and concrete leadership in this battle against drug trafficking and organized crime," he said. (