Sunday, April 26, 2009

Working with Mexico to Make our Food Trade Safer: Public Health Security and Bioterrorism Preparedness and Response Act of 2002

Do I buy the statement: No Evidence Swine Flu Is Bioterrorism Attack

No I do not buy it. This is a designer virus and the exposure is in one area of Mexico. And quite frankly, the timing of the virus' exposure to the public and Obama's visit to Mexico City is too coincidental.

Moreover, there has been great preperation on combating bioterrorism in Mexico.

Modeling Bioterrorism in the Livestock Sectors of NAFTA Members

Until two years ago, most citizens of Canada, the United States and Mexico experienced terrorism as a distant reality viewed from the safety of their living rooms. Today, North Americans encounter constant reminders of the aggravation and economic costs imposed on them by the now real threat of terrorism. The United States, the most obvious target for new terrorist activity, has responded by tightening its border security with all countries including its NAFTA partners.(2) Canada and Mexico joined the NAFTA to obtain preferred and more secure access to the United States market.

The increased threat of terrorist activity in North America raises three crucial questions for NAFTA members. First, how real is a bioterrorism threat? Second, how can the United States maintain access to its market for its NAFTA partners and at the same time meet its legitimate security concerns? Third, what are the potential economic effects of a bioterrorism attack on North America? While it is generally assumed that the United States would be the primary target of a terrorist attack, Canada, Mexico or all three NAFTA countries could be targeted.



2.1 GS/OAS/CICTE intends to establish a three (3) stage project (the “Project”) to be executed in Mexico or a Central American country, with participants representing Mexico, Central American Spanish-speaking countries, and the Dominican Republic (approximately 40 participants from eight countries), by contracting a firm qualified in developing, designing and conducting a bioterrorism crisis management table top (simulation) exercise (hereinafter referred to as “The Contractor”).


The "Public Health Security and Bioterrorism Preparedness and Response Act of 2002," became law on June 12, 2002, but the provisions affecting all domestic and foreign producers that manufacture, process, pack or store food for consumption in the United States takes effect in two months on December 12. The law is designed to protect against bioterrorist threats to the food supply, giving the FDA better tools to track shipments and contain any terrorist attack.

Bioterrorism Preparedness; Administrative Detention, Section 303
Comment Number: EC -14

Mexico is the only country (other than Canada) that shares a land border with the United States, and which ships most of its exports of food product to the United States by truck or train, rather than by ship or plane. Many of the provisions in the Bioterrorism Act of 2002 appear to be addressed to shipments of food product made by either ship or plane. Little consideration appears to have been given to the unique issues arising from the land shipment of product - - particularly when, as in the case of Mexico, a large portion of the products covered by they Act are shipped from facilities located within a few miles of the U.S. border.

INTERPOL Americas Bioterrorism Workshop urges further action

SANTIAGO, Chile – Delegates at the INTERPOL Americas Regional Workshop on Preventing Bioterrorism have endorsed a series of measures aimed at improving law enforcement awareness and training to face the threat of bioterrorism.

Attended by 78 delegates from 26 countries, participants at the three-day meeting included Police Chiefs or their representatives and scientific, legal and academic experts.

Recognising the need to continue developing awareness and expertise in preventing and investigating bioterrorist attacks, Mexico and Argentina have each agreed to host a ‘train the trainer’ programme.

Bioterrorism planning continues at frantic pace

Canada is taking the lead role in developing the international plan to bolster security against bioterrorism. France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Mexico, the United Kingdom, the US and the European Union have each agreed to designate a "point person" in that effort.

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