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Hillary Clinton, Robert Gates Traveling To Mexico Next Week For Talks On Drug Fight

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will travel to Mexico City for the Merida U.S.-Mexico High Level Consultative Group meeting on March 23, according to the State Department.

Clinton and Mexican Foreign Secretary Patricia Espinosa will chair an interagency discussion on the evolution of the Merida Initiative that focuses on enhanced engagement in support of U.S.-Mexico shared goals of breaking the power of drug trafficking organizations; strengthening the rule of law, democratic institutions and respect for human rights; creating a 21stcentury border; and building strong and resilient communities.

This is the second formal meeting of the High Level Consultative Group and has been in preparation for several months. The first meeting was held in Washington, D.C. in Dec. 2008.

Clinton will be joined by Secretary of Defense Robert M. Gates; Secretary of Homeland Security Janet A. Napolitano; Director of National Intelligence Dennis Blair; Assistant to the President for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism John O. Brennan; Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Michael G. Mullen; Immigration and Customs Enforcement Assistant Secretary for Homeland Security John Morton; Acting Deputy Attorney General Gary G. Grindler; Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) Director Adam Szubin; Office of National Drug Control Policy Acting Deputy Director of the Office of Supply Reduction Patrick Ward; and Drug Enforcement Administration Acting Administrator Michele M. Leonhart.

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