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U.S. steps up drug enforcement efforts in Guyana

Counter narcotics police officers inspect packages containing cocaine seized in Necocli, in northwestern Colombia, Saturday, May 30, 2009.

William Fernando Martinez

The U.S. government is planning to open a Drug Enforcement Administration office in the South American country of Guyana.

Ambassador Brent Hardt says officials will soon move equipment and personnel to the capital of Georgetown. Currently, a DEA office on the nearby island of Trinidad is serving Guyana.

Hardt said Thursday that local police officers will be screened to work alongside DEA agents.

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The U.S. government has repeatedly said Guyana is a major transshipment point for drugs headed to the U.S. and has criticized local authorities for not doing enough to fight the trade and money laundering.

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