Press Releases

Joint Hearing on Efforts to Stem Transnational Drug Smuggling

Washington, DC, April 24, 2014 | Justin Harclerode (202) 225-9446 | comments
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A joint hearing next week of the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee’s Subcommittee on Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation, chaired by U.S. Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-CA), and the Foreign Affairs Committee’s Subcommittee on Western Hemisphere, chaired by U.S. Rep. Matt Salmon (R-AZ), will examine the efforts of the federal government to confront transnational drug smuggling and stem the flow of illegal drugs to the United States.

The majority of illegal drugs entering the United States come from South American countries. The drugs pass through a seven million square-mile area called the Transit Zone, which includes the Caribbean Sea, the Gulf of Mexico, and the eastern Pacific Ocean. The U.S. Coast Guard is designated as the lead agency for the interdiction and apprehension of illegal drug traffickers on the high seas.

The joint hearing will focus on these policies and efforts, as well as factors that have impacted agencies’ abilities to meet drug smuggling performance targets.

The hearing, entitled “Confronting Transnational Drug Smuggling: An Assessment of Regional Partnerships,” is scheduled to begin at 10:00 a.m. on April 29, 2014 in 2172 Rayburn House Office Building.


  • Admiral Robert J. Papp, Jr., Commandant, United States Coast Guard
  • General John F. Kelly, Commander, United States Southern Command
  • Ambassador Luis E. Arreaga, Deputy Assistant Secretary of State, Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs
  • More information about the hearing, including testimony, additional background information, and live webcast, will be posted here as it becomes available. 

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