Germany seeks to stem flow of weapons to Mexico

German weapons company Heckler & Koch is accused of illegal weapons traffic to Mexico
Germany seeks to stem flow of weapons to Mexico
Seized ammunition after an operation outside Veracruz on March 6, 2012 - Photo: File Photo/REUTERS
Inder Bugarin / Corresponsal
Mexico City
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Brussels.- At the trial against six former employees of the German weapons company Heckler & Koch (H&K) that took place in Stuttgart, the nature and description of the transfers made to Mexico in a context of corruption was exposed, with the involvement of retiring division general Humberto Alfonso Guillermo Aguilar, former director of the Weapons and Ammunitions Trade Directorate (DCAM), a branch of the Ministry of National Defense (SEDENA), who allegedly requested between 20 and 25 dollars as bribe for every German rifle and pistol purchased.

The manufacturer, with headquarters in Oberndorf am Neckar, is accused of trafficking 9,472 G-36 rifles to Mexico between years 2006 and 2009, 4,767 of which made their way to Jalisco, Guerrero, Chiapas, and Chihuahua, four states that have been vetoed by the German government for corruption and systematic violations of individual guarantees on the part of local law enforcement agencies.

At the beginning of the trial, the German Organization for the Protection of Human Rights in Mexico ruled in favor of stopping the trafficking of pistols, machine guns, rifles, hand grenades, landmines, and small mortars to the country. “The export of weapons to Mexico should not be authorized while there is still a risk that they might facilitate or be directly used for the violation of human rights,” said Carola Hausotter, who coordinates a network grouping several German organizations and institutions, in an interview with EL UNIVERSAL.

“Germany has now ceased to send firearms to Mexico, and we expect other countries to follow as a result of the legal trial in Stuttgart.”

The German Federal Minister of Economy and Energy reports that in 2016, the largest economy of the European Union transferred military parachutes, navigation, and communications equipment to Mexico, for a price of around EUR$6,000,000.

“But before that, they had already sent thousands of firearms, knowing of the precarious situation in the country, and the violations of human rights that occurred in Mexican territory,” Hausotter accused.

Following eight years of delays, the Regional Court of Stuttgart begun the trial against six employees of H&K last Tuesday, accusing them of the illegal sale of thousands of G-36 rifles to Mexico.

Some units of said arsenal came to the hands of the Iguala police, and at least three of the transferred rifles were shot on the night of September 26, 2014, when the 43 normal school students of Ayotzinapa, Guerrero disappeared.


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