70% of Guns Traced in Mexico Came from United States


About 70 percent of the guns seized in Mexico and submitted to a U.S. gun-tracing program came from the U.S., said a report from U.S. senators quoted by the Associated Press. A 2009 U.S. report covering earlier years said that 87 percent of guns seized in Mexico came from the United States. The report did not specify why the percentage had changed, but the recent figures appear to included more gun-trace reports, as the reporting program in Mexico became easier to use. Evidence that U.S. weapons trafficking has fueled a drug war that has cost more than 35,000 lives in Mexico since 2006 has angered many Mexicans. On Saturday, Mexican President Felipe Calderon said, “I accuse the U.S. weapons industry of (responsibility for) the deaths of thousands of people that are occurring in Mexico. It is for profit, for the profits that it makes for the weapons industry.”

Separately, the advocacy group Violence Policy Center published a study of the gun industry’s “militarization of the U.S. civilian gun market.” The group asserted that “militarized weapons–semiautomatic assault rifles, 50 caliber anti-armor sniper rifles, and armor-piercing handguns–define the U.S. civilian gun market and are far and away the 'weapons of choice' of the traffickers supplying violent drug organizations in Mexico.”

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