"Dear friends of the United States, Mexico needs your help to stop this terrible violence that we're suffering, the best way to do this is to stop the flow of automatic weapons into Mexico" said the Mexican president in English during the unveiling ceremony.
Mexico is fighting a bloody war against drug cartels that has resulted in an escalation of violence in certain regions of the country. More than 45,000 people have been killed since 2006, and Mr. Calderon said that more than 140,000 weapons had been seized since then.
Last year, it was revealed that the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) ran a series of “gunwalking” sting operations between 2006 and 2011 under the umbrella of Project Gunrunner, a project intended to stem the flow of firearms into Mexico by interdicting straw purchasers and gun traffickers within the U.S.1 The operation called "Fast and Furious" has even resulted in members of the US Congress calling for attorney general Eric Holder’s immediate resignation.
According to Los Angeles Times, the ATF “has lost track of hundreds of firearms, many of which have been linked to crimes, including the fatal shooting of Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry in December 2010.”
The billboard unveiled yesterday at the border, is just a symbolic gesture from a president leaving office in less than a year, but it sure makes a statement.