That’s according to U.S. Southern Command, Gen. Douglas Fraser. Fraser made the comment Friday at a conference organized by the University of Miami’s Center for Hemispheric Policy in South Florida.
He said Latin America is not only a threat for drug trafficking but weapons trade and money laundering.
“We have a key threat that we all need to focus on and that is transnational criminal organizations,” he was quoted as saying.
Fraser added that the U.S. government has beefed up its coordination with Central American governments to combat the problems but admitted that none of the states in the region pose any serious security threats to the U.S.
High rates of crime and violence in Latin America are undermining growth, threatening human welfare, and impeding social development, according to World Bank and the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) and economists and World Bank officials say years of rampant violent crime is not only robbing Latin America of significant private investment but also in some cases stealing more than 8 percent from national economic growth.