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  • Mexico's President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador attends a media conference at Palacio Nacional in Mexico City, Mexico January 30, 2019.

    Mexico's President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador attends a media conference at Palacio Nacional in Mexico City, Mexico January 30, 2019. | Photo: Reuters

Published 30 January 2019

According to the president, the new administration is focused on reducing homicides and kidnappings, not 'spectacular' operations.

President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador has announced that the so-called ‘war on drugs’ is officially over in Mexico, as the security strategy has been modified since his election.

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Lopez Obrador said that “spectacular” security operations, aimed at capturing the highest circles of drug cartels, are over. Now, the focus will be to stop the rising rates of homicides and kidnappings, he said during his regular morning conference at the National Palace.

“War is officially over, we will get peace” he declared, in reference to the terminology adopted since Felipe Calderon sent the military out into the streets in 2006.

According to the president, the previous strategy “didn’t solve anything.”

“We have not arrested capos because it’s not our main objective. The government’s main objective is guaranteeing security and the strategy of the operations is no longer to arrest capos,” he said.

He also highlighted the fact that there were only 54 murders on Tuesday, a feat considering that the daily average is of 80.

“That’s what matters to me. Reducing homicides, the number of robberies, to end kidnappings. That’s fundamental, not espectacular,” he said.

The government of Lopez Obrador put up an interdisciplinary team, integrated by federal institutions, to publish daily statistics on homicides. Although these are not the official figures, the number has strategic objectives.

According to official data, calculated by the Public Security National System (SESNSP), there were 2,916 murdered in December 2018, the most violent December in Mexico’s modern history.

Lopez Obrador has been holding daily morning conference to address current issues and answer to the press. On Wednesday he met with the Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez to commemorate 80 years since Mexican President Lazaro Cardenas opened the country’s doors to the exiled from the dictatorship of Francisco Franco.

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