Gun violence in Mexico and Central America has created chaos and heartache on an unimaginable scale.
Parents grieving from forced disappearances, cartels conducting assassinations in broad daylight, torture, arbitrary arrests – an environment where violence is far too often met with impunity, where death and destruction can come at any time from both state and non-state actors alike.
The guns fueling the violence come primarily from the United States. Some are trafficked illegally. Some are exported legally. Regardless of how these dangerous weapons end up in Mexico, the fact is that 70 percent of the firearms recovered from crime scenes in Mexico originated in the United States.
Recently, Global Exchange’s Stop US Arms to Mexico program co-organized an international delegation to investigate the global firearms trade and its human impacts in Mexico. Twelve international experts and advocates from six countries that export or traffic firearms to Mexico joined the delegation. Out of this delegation, we’ve put together a video series detailing the stakes of the crisis, as well as proposals to help end the violence.
We have been working for nearly a decade to call for action to significantly reduce U.S. legal arms sales (to pre-Merida Initiative levels) and stop illegal gun trafficking to Mexico.
Starting today, and through the rest of this week, we’ll be participating in a week of online action. We’ll be joined in this effort by the Latin America Working Group, Global Action on Gun Violence, Newtown Action Alliance, Black Lives Matter-South Bend, Mexican Commission for the Defense and Promotion of Human Rights, and many other organizations.
We’ll also be reaching out to you with more information about how you can join in!
Together, we can help stem the tide of gun violence.