The William J. Perry Center for Hemispheric Defense Studies and Colombia’s Escuela Superior de Guerra/Centro Regional de Estudios Estratégicos de Seguridad have convened over 100 senior defense and security professionals, from Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Paraguay, Peru, Uruguay and the U.S., for a “South American Regional Countering Transnational Threats Seminar.” This event is taking place August 9-11, 2016, in Bogotá, Colombia. Through a series of expert lectures and interactive sessions, seminar participants are examining threats posed by international terrorism, transnational organized crime, cybersecurity and emerging technologies and discussing strategies and policies to counter these threats in the Americas.
Colombian Vice Minister of Defense Anibal Fernandez de Soto and U.S. Southern Command Deputy Military Commander LTG Joseph DiSalvo were the keynote speakers for the first day of the seminar. They both described the evolving threats from illicit networks to the Western Hemisphere that included diversified drug trafficking, illegal mining, human trafficking, money laundering, and cybersecurity and the scourge of corruption and impunity that empower terrorism and transnational crime. Both underscored the need for even more interagency and international cooperation to better understand, identify and counter illicit networks and trans-regional threats.