Lugar: Mexican drug lords 'most immediate' threat to U.S. security

The Senate's top Republican on foreign policy said this weekend that drug traffickers operating on the Mexican border pose a more immediate national security threat than domestic terrorists.

Sen. Richard Lugar (Ind.), senior Republican on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, is calling on the White House to intensify efforts to help Mexico fight drug lords at the border, where escalating violence has killed tens of thousands of people in the past few years.  

"Transnational drug trafficking organizations operating from Mexico represent the most immediate national security threat faced by the United States in the Western Hemisphere," Lugar said in remarks prepared for an Indiana-based training for Mexican prosecutors Sunday, Reuters reports.

"The United States should undertake a broad review of further steps the U.S. military and the intelligence community could take to help combat the Mexican cartels in association with the Mexican government."

The Indiana Republican is suggesting the U.S. military and intelligence communities provide Mexico with more surveillance help, to combat the flow of drugs, money and weapons across the 1,969 mile border, Reuters reports.