New Security Force to Debut Soon in Mexico

Jul 20, 2014 | Surveillance & Security

MEXICO CITY — A vaunted plan to create a new security force, known as the Gendarmerie, has been watered down sharply in the past two years but is about to come to fruition.

Sometime in late July, the government of President Enrique Pena Nieto will put the 5,000-member Gendarmerie into action, National Security Commissioner Monte Alejandro Rubido said Friday.

The force will not be anywhere near the scope of what Pena Nieto outlined while running for president back in 2012. At that time, he suggested the new force might have up to 50,000 officers.

Since then, the government has steadily scaled back its vision of the force. By February 2013, a previous national security commissioner, Manuel Mondragon y Kalb, forecast 10,000 gendarmes. Four months after that, Interior Secretary Miguel Angel Osorio Chong announced the force might have only 5,000 people.

In a briefing with foreign reporters Friday, Rubido said Friday that gendarme recruits are getting final training in Colombia. Other nations that have provided assistance include Spain, France, and the United States.

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