Border Insecurity in Central America's Northern Triangle
The problem of border insecurity in northern Central America is not new. Governments in El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras have historically neglected their hinterlands and porous borders, with Mexican-based trafficking cartels being only the latest to take advantage of the uncontrolled borders.
Border insecurity issues are rooted in long-standing regional quandaries such as a paucity of resources, weak and corrupt governments, and economies and political systems that neglect peripheral regions.
These challenges will not be overcome overnight. Arguing that a focus on the borders per se is misleading, the authors sketch a number of policy recommendations, including the need to focus on providing state presence, services, and security to the neglected areas.
I. Introduction: Neglected Borders, from the Colonial Era to the Present
II. Border Insecurity in Central America's Northern Triangle
III. The Socioeconomic Dynamics of Border Communities
IV. Types of Illicit Trafficking
V. Regional Border Control Efforts and Challenges
A. Border Security Policies and Programs at the National Level
B. Border Security Policies and Programs at the Bilateral Level
C. Border Security Policies and Programs at the Multilateral Level Regionally
VI. Recommendations for Improved Border Security Policies and Practices
A. Differentiate among the Problems of Violence, Illicit Trafficking, and Organized Crime
B. Focus on Improving Security in Border Regions, instead of Border Security
C. Create New National and Regional Security Frameworks
D. Improve Systems for Information Sharing and Coordination
E. Involve Local Governments