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Southern Command chief offers Uruguay help against organized crime

Montevideo, Feb 8 (Prensa Latina) The head of the U.S. Southern Command, Laura Richardson, said today that her government is willing to help Uruguay in the fight against organized crime.

It was in a press conference at the end of her official visit here, in which she assured that transnational criminal organizations are more powerful than ever.

It is not only drug trafficking but also human trafficking, illegal mining, deforestation of the Amazon.

Illegal mining pollutes the waters, many times in areas where there are indigenous populations’, and ‘I think all these threats are connected’, said the Pentagon senior official.

She said that it is a ‘vicious circle’ in which she proposed to follow the ‘money trail’ to identify money laundering activities, according to La Diaria, one of the media invited to the press conference.

Richardson assured that transnational organized crime moves 300 billion dollars per year and that is why ‘they are very powerful’.

She said that she discussed these issues with local authorities, particularly ‘in terms of cross-border work with Brazil, Uruguay, Argentina’, countries she described as ‘partners’ in this purpose.

If Uruguay asks the United States for help, we will be there to help’, he said.

The Uruguayan government, she said, ‘must ask for that help, as a sovereign country’.