Darien back in news as possible weak point for illegal smuggling; Border Patrol receives more support
- By : Panama Now
- Category : Crime
OP ED: by James “JB” Bryson
In the past we covered the haphazard logging operations that were occurring in the Darien region. What makes this region even more challenging is the location it serves as a possible conduit of illegal trafficking and smuggling between Panama and the Colombian borders. A very dense and jungle filled region, it serves as a viable option for illegal activity.
The National Border Service (Senafront) , during the months of January and February, will receive support from helicopters of the Southern Command of the United States to mobilize “a heavy load” to the province of Darien.
According to sources close to the operation, those equipment transported to the border with Colombia will serve to combat the “transnational illicit networks” .
The joint mission, according to sources, has been called Darién Lift and has two purposes, the first is to establish the necessary facilities to improve the position of Panamanian security forces in the area, and the second is to achieve better results in future operations joint efforts between the Office of National Security Investigations of the United States and the Panamanian security forces.
Darién Lift will be carried out in two phases, the first from January 4 to 14, and the second from February 19 to March 2. Heavy cargo will be mobilized in US helicopters from the Nicanor airport in Metetí, to different Senafront border bases, including Panusa, La Bonga, La Olla, Alto Limón and La Union.
The use of aircraft in this mission is essential to move heavy cargo at these remote points within the Darién jungle, the sources said.