Triple Frontier (Spanish: La Triple Frontera,
Fronteira) is a tri-border area
along the junction of Paraguay, Argentina, and Brazil near the
cities of Ciudad del
Este, Alto Paran√°;
Iguaz√ļ, Misiones and Foz do
Igua√ßu, Paran√° respectively.
- The Triple Frontier should not be confused with Tres Fronteras, at the common border among
Brazil, Peru, and Colombia.
On the Argentine side, it is
often referred to as "Los Tres Fronteras
" in the local
signage. This area is the location of the Iguazu Falls and the Itaipu
The population in the Hito Triple Frontera is concentrated in three
interacting border cities. In 2001 Ciudad del Este was the largest
city, with a population of 240,000, while the smallest ‚ÄĒ
Argentina's Puerto Iguaz√ļ ‚ÄĒ had a population of 28,100. The
Brazilian tourist-centric city Foz do Igua√ßu has a population of
190,000. The Arab
and other Asian
immigrant communities, which make up an
important part of the urban population in the Tri-Border Area, are
estimated to number approximately 50,000.
Hito Tres Fronteras, the Iguaz√ļ and the
Paran√° rivers converge.
It is an important tourist
area, within the touristic subregion of the Regi√≥n de las Aguas
, with key hydroelectric resources. Visitors can see the
Tancredo Neves bridge, which connects the Argentine city of
Iguaz√ļ and its Brazilian neighbor, Foz do
At this landmark, one can see all three countries simultaneously.
Furthermore, a visitor can see an obelisk in each country, painted
with the national colors of the country in which it is located.
Also, there is an artisanal fair at this landmark, where one can
buy artisanal and artistic works characteristic of the surrounding
The particular geography of the border region makes it very
difficult to monitor, facilitating and promoting organized crime
and the illicit activities
connected with it.
and again in 2006, the United States Treasury Department mentioned in a memo that there
are "clear examples" of Islamic groups in the region that "finance
terrorist activities". Groups like Egypt's al-Gama'a al-Islamiyya, Islamic Jihad, Hezbollah, and Al Qaeda
are believed to draw some of their funding from activities in the
The Paraguayan side of the Triple Frontier
could be serving as a haven for terrorist operations as that nation
has no anti-terrorism laws. Thus, financially contributing to
terrorist organizations is not punishable by law. Suspected
terrorists are instead apprehended under tax evasion and other
charges of similar nature.
response to the situation, a military training agreement with
Asunci√≥n (Paraguay), giving immunity to US soldiers, caused some concern after media reports initially
reported that a base housing 20,000 US soldiers was being built at
Paraguay approved the entry in May 2006 of
400 US soldiers "for joint military exercises, such as programs on
fighting urban terrorists, public security and humanitarian
assistance," according to the Washington Post
. However, in October
2006 Paraguay decided not to renew such immunity from prosecution
by the International
On 16 June, the governments of the three nations stated they would
set up a joint intelligence centre in Foz de Iguazu specifically to
monitor the situation.
In popular culture
- The Triple Frontier (or here referenced as the Tri-Border Area)
is featured as the backdrop for the NCIS episode "An Eye for an Eye" , as NCIS
Special Agents Anthony DiNozzo and
Caitlin Todd must travel
down to this area of southern Paraguay in order to investigate a
professor involved in a case in which a pair of blue eyeballs were
mailed to a murder victim.
- In the novel by Vince Flynn, Extreme Measures, a
terrorist group funded by al-Qaeda trains and plans to execute
terrorist attacks on America while living in the Triple
- In the 2006 movie version of Miami
Vice, a notorious drug lord is tracked down the Americas by
detectives Sonny Crockett and Rico Tubbs to his hideout in the Tri-Border
- Cristiana Brafman Kittner, "The Role of Safe Havens
in Islamist Terrorism", The Journal of Terrorism and Political
Violence, September 2007.
- Jeffrey Goldberg, "In the Party of God", Part 2 of
2, The New Yorker, 28 October 2002.
- US Marines put a foot in Paraguay,
September 9, 2005 .
- Paraguay Hardens U.S. Military Stance,
The Washington Post, October 10,
- Agency to monitor tri-border area,
BBC, August 17, 2005.