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News Link • Obama Administration

Pentagon Tells Latin America To Stop Using Military For Domestic Operations

•, Allison Churchill
 During a trip to South America for the 10th Conference of Defense Ministers of the Americas, U.S. Defense Secretary advised Latin American countries to strengthen their civilian police forces, instead of using the military for regular law enforcement, the Associated Press reported.

South American countries, such as Colombia, often use their militaries against drug traffickers and violent cartels. Panetta said this is not a good long-term solution.

He did promise his peers support in strengthening their police forces.

Though he told them the line between when to use military or police forces hasn't always been clear for the U.S., especially after the attacks on 9/11, the US Southern Command (SOUTHCOM) website specifically names drug trafficking as a threat it works to combat.

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