FORT KENT — President Obama has signed off on a proposal to assess and strengthen security at the country’s northern border.

Republican New Hampshire Sen. Kelly Ayotte, a bill sponsor, said Thursday the country is facing unprecedented national security challenges that demand a full understanding of the northern border’s needs, strengths, and vulnerabilities.

The bill requires the federal Department of Homeland Security to evaluate security threats at the northern border. Maine Sens. Angus King, an independent, and Susan Collins, a Republican, bill co-sponsors, say the agency must conduct a comprehensive review of resources and personnel levels.

The senators also say it will require the federal government to consider what tools border security officials need to stop drug and human trafficking.

The border of the United States and Canada is the world’s longest common land border. It’s 5,500 miles long and has 120 border crossings.

Canada this year promised new regulations and a string of measures to counter gun smuggling from the United States, which has much looser firearms laws.


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