Mexico’s Caravan for Peace with Justice and Dignity began its four-week tour of the U.S. on Sunday, making Los Angeles one of the first of over 20 U.S. cities it will visit. The organization of U.S. and Mexican activists works to promote a bi-national dialogue on gang-related violence and the consequences of the drug war, sponsored by the governments of both nations.
According to activist Rafael Trujillo Herrera, the march seeks to “sow a seed of consciousness in the minds of the U.S. people and government officials…Unfortunately, we have seen that the United States has supplied the firearms, and we (Mexico) get the casualties, the bloodshed, and those who have disappeared.”
In the past six years, over 55,000 people have been killed in Mexico’s drug war, and a study by the Norwegian Refugee Council has found that some 140,000 people have been displaced by the violence. Mexico’s National Human Rights Commission has documented over 5,000 disappearances.
According to an April 2012 report by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, 69 percent of guns recovered in Mexico between 2007 and 2011 were manufactured in the United States.