Panama and Costa Rica agree to strengthen border security

February 24, 2015

Panama and Costa Rica, the only two countries on the Central American isthmus with no army, are strengthening security cooperation in the face of drug trafficking and other global threats.

The 330-kilometer border shared by Panama and Costa Rica is an area that’s highly vulnerable to organized crime, including drug and weapons trafficking, as well as smuggling. Both countries rely on their police forces for national security. Lax security measures along the border also allow criminals in one country to easily cross the border in an attempt to avoid arrest.

Panamanian and Costa Rican authorities met on Feb. 11 and 12 in the western Panamanian city of Bocas del Toro and agreed to step up coordination and create a joint task force “for more efficient crime fighting,” according to Panama’s Security Minister Rodolfo Aguilera. Aguilera presided over the talks with his recently-appointed Costa Rican counterpart, Gustavo Mata.

Aguilera also said the two countries agreed to training, joint border surveillance and to exchange information and security technology.

In an interview with The Tico Times, Mata said the countries also discussed creating a joint task force made up of police officers from both sides of the border.

The talks were attended by Rosso Serrano, who headed the Colombian National Police from 1994 to 2000. Serrano is credited with having masterminded the dismantling of the Cali and Medellín drug cartels.

Honduran Security Minister Julián Pacheco, who was sworn in this month by President Juan Orlando Hernández, also attended the meeting as an observer.

A meeting to discuss cooperation among Costa Rican, Panamanian and Honduran police forces is being scheduled for later this year, Costa Rican authorities said.

You may be interested

Costa Rica, Brazil battle rumors of tension and injury before high-stakes matchup
World Cup 2018
90 views
World Cup 2018
90 views

Costa Rica, Brazil battle rumors of tension and injury before high-stakes matchup

AFP and The Tico Times - June 19, 2018

The stakes couldn't be higher: if Costa Rica loses to its opponent on Friday, it will be out of the…

3 attractive areas for expat living in Costa Rica
Moving to Costa Rica
140 views
Moving to Costa Rica
140 views

3 attractive areas for expat living in Costa Rica

Phoebe Conner - June 19, 2018

Costa Rica is a surprisingly diverse country for its size, with tropical rainforests, mountainous regions and of course, breathtaking coastlines.…

Download printable Sloth Kong World Cup brackets
World Cup 2018
107 views
World Cup 2018
107 views

Download printable Sloth Kong World Cup brackets

Katherine Stanley - June 19, 2018

Ready to keep track of the World Cup results? Eager for a little ray of Sloth Kong on the wall…