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July 14, 2014

Former Clinton Advisor: Unaccompanied Minors are ‘Refugees of Drug War We’ve Created’
By Jorge Rivas

“If U.S. drug policy had been less militaristic and less focused on law enforcement it’s quite likely that we would see significantly less problems now with kids fleeing to the U.S. from places like Honduras,” said Ethan Nadelmann, executive director of the Drug Policy Alliance, a group that promotes alternatives to the war on drugs. Nadelmann criticizes the U.S. for foisting its drug-war policy on smaller countries. He says the situation in Central America today would be different if more money were spent on public health, rather than pursuing prohibitionist policies. “Many of these countries criminalized drugs that they had never heard of because of pressure from the United States,” Nadelmann said in a telephone interview Monday. Nadelmann pointed out the United States has deported large numbers of gang members to Central America, many of whom returned to the countries they were born in to transform the criminal and gang culture. Roughly 40,000 people have been deported for drug-law violations every year since 2008, according to an analysis of federal immigration data conducted by the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse at Syracuse University

Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse, Syracuse University
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