HomeNewsBriefObama: 'Impossible' to Stop Gun Trafficking South
BRIEF

Obama: 'Impossible' to Stop Gun Trafficking South

ARMS TRAFFICKING / 11 NOV 2011 BY RONAN GRAHAM EN

U.S. President Barack Obama said his administration has no plans to implement new controls on arms sales, despite acknowledging the severity of the problem of illegal arms trafficking and the difficulty in slowing that traffic south, a Mexican news outlet reported.

"It is impossible to stop all arms traffic from north to south," Obama was quoted by El Informador online as saying in a press conference reportedly given to electronic media.

Obama added that his strategy to curb the illegal trafficking of arms from the U.S. into Mexico is to focus on more stringent enforcement of existing laws. Obama admitted that much improvement can be made on this front, following the so-called "Fast and Furious" scandal, the report said.

Under Operation Fast and Furious, carried out by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF), U.S. officials allowed the sale of firearms to illegal purchasers in an attempt to trace gun-smuggling routes by Mexican gangs to the source buyer. However, around 1,700 weapons went missing during the nearly two-year investigation.

During that time period, close to 20,000 Mexican citizens died in organized crime-related activity, and one U.S. border patrol agent was killed in an incident where authorities found a weapon that the ATF let "walk," according to subsequent investigations.

Obama was speaking just one day after U.S. attorney general Eric Holder told a Senate hearing that that the U.S. is "losing the battle" to stem the flow of weapons into Mexico. In a reference to Operation Fast and Furious, Holder described as "flawed" past U.S. attempts to tackle the problem and he told Senate that Congress should bear some responsibility for the problem due to its hostility towards gun control.

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.

DONATE

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.

DONATE

Related Content

ELITES AND CRIME / 7 JUN 2017

Mexico's June 4 elections have demonstrated once again that the country's political system is unable to adequately filter out candidates…

INFOGRAPHICS / 29 MAR 2019

Authorities in Mexico have identified seven gangs that are posing major security threats in the country’s capital, although their status…

INFOGRAPHICS / 30 NOV 2010

InSight Crime maps where Mexican authorities have found mass graves in Mexico since the beginning of 2010. …

About InSight Crime

THE ORGANIZATION

Oceans Pillaged in Central America and the Caribbean

5 AUG 2022

Last week, InSight Crime published the first installment of a nine-part investigation uncovering the hidden depths of Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated (IUU) fishing in Latin America. The first installment covered Central America and…

THE ORGANIZATION

Venezuela’s Tren de Aragua Becomes Truly Transnational

29 JUL 2022

This week, InSight Crime published a deep dive into the total control that Venezuelan mega-gang, Tren de Aragua, has over the lives of those it smuggles between Venezuela and Chile…

THE ORGANIZATION

Turkish Traffickers Delivering Latin American Cocaine to Persian Gulf

15 JUL 2022

Last week, InSight Crime published the second half of an investigation piecing together the emerging role of Turkish cocaine traffickers in supplying Russia and the Persian Gulf, which are among…

THE ORGANIZATION

Turkey as a Lynchpin in European Cocaine Pipeline

8 JUL 2022

InSight Crime is extending its investigation into the cocaine pipeline to Europe, and tracking the growing connections between Latin American drug traffickers and European criminal organizations. This led us to…

THE ORGANIZATION

Memo Fantasma Coverage Gets Worldwide Attention

1 JUL 2022

Guillermo Acevedo, the former Colombian drug lord and paramilitary commander better known as Memo Fantasma, may soon be allowed to leave prison. Since first revealing the identity of Memo Fantasma…