@StateDept: Stop Licensing Gun Sales to Mexican Military and Police
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Dear Secretary of State Tillerson,
The State Department should suspend licenses to ship firearms to Mexican military and police until the U.S. can ensure they do not go to forces that collude with organized crime or violate human rights.
Gun homicides in Mexico this year are the highest on record. Yet:
• U.S. legal gun exports to the Mexican military, which distributes guns to state and local police, are nearly ten times what they were in 2001-2004;
• the State Department licensed $266 million worth of gun sales by the U.S. gun producer Sig Sauer to the Mexican military; and
• the Mexican Army sells guns to police with no verifiable mechanisms to track U.S. firearm shipments.
As a result, U.S. companies have exported assault weapons to police that violate human rights and collude with organized crime, including police who attacked and disappeared 43 students from Ayotzinapa.
The two major earthquakes that shook Mexico in September caused billions of dollars in damages to homes, businesses, and infrastructure. Two hundred fifty thousand Mexicans lost their homes. U.S.-Mexico trade should benefit the majority of people in both countries, not arm forces that are destroying families and causing them to flee in search of refuge.
The United States must stop weapons exports to end users in the Mexican military and police for whom there is documentation of collusion with organized crime or commission of gross human rights violations, until they have been brought to justice.
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