HomeNewsBriefAmnesty Warns of 700,000 Illegal Guns in Paraguay

Amnesty Warns of 700,000 Illegal Guns in Paraguay


Amnesty International has called on the Paraguayan government to better regulate weapons, saying that there are a million weapons in civilian hands in the country and only a third are registered.

The global human rights organization called on Paraguayan authorities to adopt policies that will cut down armed violence in the impoverished country, where registration and regulation of firearms remains scant despite escalating guerrilla attacks, large-scale marijuana production, and arms smuggling into Brazil.

Amnesty International officials stated that Paraguay is not impervious to the problem presented by the global trade of illicit firearms, ABC reports. The organization maintained that illegal guns have become an ever-present element in Paraguayan society, posing a threat to citizen security that must be addressed.

According to National Police statistics gathered last year, Paraguay saw one gun-related death daily. The country’s Directorate of Military Equipment assessment shows that of the one million arms in civilian hands, only 30 percent are registered.

InSight Crime Analysis

Paraguay is an important site for the smuggling of weapons into Brazil. The Brazilian government has indicated that the majority of entry points for weapons moved illicitly into the country are on the Paraguayan border. One driver of this is Paraguay's lax gun regulations; arms are often smuggled into the country from Argentina and then on to Brazil.

Another factor that could be driving up the number of illegal weapons in Paraguay is the growing presence of Brazilian criminal groups. Drug gangs like Red Command (Comando Vermelho) have reportedly located themselves over the border, attracted by weaker law enforcement and by the chance to cut middlemen out of their trafficking deals.

Paraguay is also home to guerrilla group the Paraguayan People’s Army (EPP), which has launched several armed attacks on civilian as well as police targets in the last 12 months -- attacks like these, in rural areas where there is little state presence, contributes to a sense of insecurity in the country.

share icon icon icon

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.


What are your thoughts? Click here to send InSight Crime your comments.

We encourage readers to copy and distribute our work for non-commercial purposes, with attribution to InSight Crime in the byline and links to the original at both the top and bottom of the article. Check the Creative Commons website for more details of how to share our work, and please send us an email if you use an article.

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.


Related Content


A prominent clergyman in Paraguay has called attention to the establishment of permanent bases in the country by Brazilian criminals,…

EPP / 13 MAR 2012

A recent spate of attacks by Paraguay's EPP guerrilla group, in which they demanded that businesses hand out aid to…


Social leaders across Colombia were murdered at an almost unprecedented rate in 2019, and for a wide range of causes.

About InSight Crime


Venezuela's Cocaine Revolution Met With Uproar

6 MAY 2022

On May 4, InSight Crime launched its latest investigation, Venezuela’s Cocaine Revolution¸ accompanied by a virtual panel on its findings. The takeaways from this three-year effort, including the fact that Venezuela…


Venezuela Drug Trafficking Investigation and InDepth Gender Coverage

29 APR 2022

On May 4, InSight Crime will be publishing The Cocaine Revolution in Venezuela, a groundbreaking investigation into how the Venezuelan government regulates the cocaine trade in the country. An accompanying event,…


InDepth Coverage of Juan Orlando Hernández

22 APR 2022

Ever since Juan Orlando Hernández was elected president of Honduras in 2014, InSight Crime has provided coverage of every twist and turn during his rollercoaster time in office, amid growing…


Venezuela's Cocaine Revolution

15 APR 2022

On May 4th, InSight Crime will publish a groundbreaking investigation on drug trafficking in Venezuela. A product of three years of field research across the country, the study uncovers cocaine production in…


Widespread Coverage of InSight Crime MS13 Investigation

8 APR 2022

In a joint investigation with La Prensa Gráfica, InSight Crime recently revealed that four of the MS13’s foremost leaders had been quietly released from…