by Donald Wood
Last updated: 9:05 AM ET, Mon February 14, 2022
The President of Mexico announced the Ministry of National Defense and SEMAR would take over security at several airports across the country, including international facilities in Cancun and Cozumel.
According to the Riviera Maya News, Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador revealed security protocols at airports would be restructured as naval officials take over customs and immigration operations.
Security at Cancun and Cozumel International Airports was previously managed by National Guard, but Lopez Obrador said the Marina has already started the process of taking over almost every aspect of security.
"We are carrying out a restructuring of all the systems that have to do with migration and customs so that we can give attention to tourists and visitors as they deserve and also so that there are no extortions," Lopez Obrador said.
The Mexican naval forces are expected to streamline the security processes at seven major airports, reduce wait time for international travelers, manage surveillance and eliminate possible corruption, which was a problem in 2021.
"Customs will be monitored to ensure that they are not controlled by so-called organized crime or white-collar crime," Lopez Obrador continued.
Security has been a major topic of conversation in popular tourism destinations, as the U.S. Embassy & Consulates in Mexico issued a special security alert in January for American citizens traveling to Quintana Roo.
In response, the city of Cancun launched the Beach Reinforcement program, which saw Tourist Security Battalion officers patrolling the sands on ATVs, surveilling citizens and visitors, and performing random inspections to prevent any criminal activity in the area.
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