Around 2,000 illegal weapons enter Mexico every day

More than 50% of the 308,881 weapons seized from 2006 to 2014 were found in Mexico City, Tamaulipas and Michoacán.
Katia Torres y Miguel Bonilla
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From 2006 to 2014 Mexico's government seized 308,881 weapons, 60% of them between 2009 and 2012. 

Reports from the Attorney General's Office (PGR), the Ministry of National Defense (SEDENA) and the Navy (Semar) to which EL UNIVERSAL had access also revealed that more 50% of the weapons (155,000) were seized in three states: Mexico City, Tamaulipas and Michoacán, with 93,105, 31, 926 and 31,458 firearms, respectively, followed by Sinaloa (23,386), Guerrero (12,235) and Chihuahua (11,826). 

This means an average of 94 weapons were seized every day, enough to equip a military force larger than Mexico's Navy, that has about 60,000 members, or the Federal Police, with 45,000 agents, or even the armed forces of countries like Syria, whose army totals 304,000 elements and ranks 16th globally by size. 

The amount of weapons seized in Mexico also exceeds the number of firearms of the military, reserves and paramilitary forces of all Central American countries, which together account for 257,500 troops. 

Although it is very difficult to calculate how many weapons enter the country illegally, an arms trafficking report from the U.S. to Mexico published by the Center of Social Studies and Public Opinion (CESOP) of the Chamber of Deputies in December 2014 calculated that around 2,000 weapons enter Mexico every day, i.e. a total 730,000 a year. 

It adds that according to unofficial estimates, there were 15.5 million unregistered weapons in Mexico in 2011, a figure that may have increased in recent years. 

However security specialist Guy Ben-Nun says not all weapons entering Mexico illegally stay in the country, as their final destination can be other countries, mainly South America. He added that the number of weapons available contributes to the escalation of violence. 

According to the UN's 2014 Report on Violence Prevention, seven in 10 people are killed by firearms in Mexico, which places our country in the 12th place, at the same level of countries like Brazil and Kuwait. 


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