Bush Says America Should Work to Stop Guns from Entering Mexico from U.S.
The president made the remarks while meeting on Tuesday with Mexican President Felipe Calderon in the White House.
“Americans are concerned about the battle that's taking place in Mexico, and I want our fellow citizens to understand that this man understands the responsibilities of government to provide security; that he will not allow his country, or parts of his country, to be taken over by narco-traffickers,” said Bush, "and that the United States of America wants to share and help deal with the issue on both sides of the border. The less drugs we use, the less pressure there will be in Mexico. We have got responsibilities to help prevent guns from going from the United States into Mexico.”
President Calderon said in the same meeting that he is dedicated to promoting the rule of law in his country, which saw a record number of drug-trafficking related murders last year.
“With regard to the issues that President Bush has raised, I want to say that our administration has made a crucial decision in this regard,” said Calderon. “We are going to be promoting law, we are going to be promoting order in our country. We will be promoting the rule of law for all Mexicans. We have worked jointly in this regard. We have worked together on the drug trafficking combat front. We have worked together to combat organized crime.”
“We are committed to fighting criminals and to overcoming them once and for all,” said Calderon. “And the rule of law is the one thing that I want to stress we are going to promote, no matter what, in our country.”
Ricardo Alday, spokesperson for the Mexican Embassy in Washington, D.C. told CNSNews.com in December that drug-cartel-related murders had risen “about 114 to 115 percent” in Mexico in the first 11 months of 2008 compared to the first 11 months of 2007.
From January through November 2007, there were 2,413 drug-cartel-related murders in Mexico, and from January through November 2008, there were 5,376.
Last April, in response to the violence, the U.S. State Department issued a “Travel Alert” for Americans traveling to Mexico. The alerts noted that “Mexican army and police confrontations with drug cartels have taken on the characteristics of small-unit combat.”