Aleteia logoAleteia logo
Saturday 18 September |
Saint of the Day: Bl. Daudi Okelo and Bl. Jildo Irwa
home iconNews
line break icon

Mexican bishop suggests drug cartels are ready for dialogue



Mexican soldiers cut an illegal field of opium poppies.

John Burger - published on 08/27/19 - updated on 08/27/19

With heroin prices falling because of cheaper fentanyl, it's no longer profitable to grow poppies.

The opioid crisis in the United States has devastated lives, families and communities. But it may have had an unexpected side effect on the endemic drug cartel problem in Mexico.

According to a Catholic bishop in Guerrero State, the rise of synthetic fentanyl has led to a collapse in the illegal economy of planting opium poppies and processing heroin in Mexico. Ordinary people, who have relied on growing opium for easy money, have been suffering hunger because of the inability to compete with the much cheaper synthetic drug, said Bishop Salvador Rangel Mendoza of the Diocese of Chilpancingo-Chilapa.

With the crash in heroin prices, some drug cartel leaders “no longer want to fight because it doesn’t make sense,” Bishop Rangel told Catholic News Service. “What are they fighting over? … Now, nothing.”

Bishop Rangel is urging the Mexican government to hold talks with armed groups, including cartels, saying many in the illegal drug business are unable to make ends meet and are “seeking an exit.”

“If the government wants to dialogue with these criminal groups, … I think that’s good,” he said. “To get peace you have to dialogue, even with Satan, with whomever it might be to get peace. But they have this point of view that we don’t want to talk because they break the law. At least you have to listen to them.”

Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said Aug. 21 that he opposes dialogue with criminal groups.

“There won’t be dialogue with members of organized crime groups, as they’re called. We don’t have that relationship,” he said. Rather, he said it’s important to “attend to the causes that originate insecurity, violence. That’s what we’re doing, rescuing the countryside so there’s work, so that young people are attended to.”


Support Aleteia!

If you’re reading this article, it’s thanks to the generosity of people like you, who have made Aleteia possible.

Here are some numbers:

  • 20 million users around the world read every month
  • Aleteia is published every day in seven languages: English, French, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Polish, and Slovenian
  • Each month, readers view more than 50 million pages
  • Nearly 4 million people follow Aleteia on social media
  • Each month, we publish 2,450 articles and around 40 videos
  • We have 60 full time staff and approximately 400 collaborators (writers, translators, photographers, etc.)

As you can imagine, these numbers represent a lot of work. We need you.

Support Aleteia with as little as $1. It only takes a minute. Thank you!

Daily prayer
And today we celebrate...

Top 10
Kathleen N. Hattrup
Pope considers what to do with pro-abortion Catholic politicians
Philip Kosloski
How receiving Holy Communion can drive away demons
Berthe and Marcel
Lauriane Vofo Kana
This couple has the longest marriage in France
Philip Kosloski
Why is the feast of the Holy Cross celebrated on September 14?
Mathilde De Robien
How a lost masterpiece of sacred art was discovered thanks to chi...
Kathleen N. Hattrup
On same-sex unions, Pope says Church doesn’t have power to change...
Philip Kosloski
This prayer to St. Anthony is said to have “never been known to f...
See More
Get Aleteia delivered to your inbox. Subscribe here.