WASHINGTON, D.C. – Tamaulipas Gov. Francisco García Cabeza de Vaca and U.S. Rep. Henry Cuellar have repeated their calls for the U.S. government to stop weapons being smuggled into Mexico.

According to García Cabeza de Vaca, 70 percent of the illegal weapons confiscated in Tamaulipas originate from the United States.

The governor and congressman brought up the issue of weapons going south during a news conference in Washington, D.C. It is far from the first time they have made such pleas.

“Of course, we have tried to raise awareness in this visit to Washington to many people with whom we have had the opportunity to talk,” García Cabeza de Vaca said. “What we want is that these weapons do not reach Mexico, and especially at the hands of criminals because they are the ones that are generating much of the violence in our country.”

Congressman Cuellar said: “And to follow what the governor said, I agree with him and one of the things we want to do is see if we can make a meeting with the ATF, CBP and other agencies with the Government of Tamaulipas to see what we can do to try to stop the weapons that are entering Mexico and we hope to achieve this and for that I thank the Governor because we know that we have complicated problems on both sides of the Rio Grande.”

ATF stands for the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. CBP stands for Customs & Border Protection. 

“The thing is that we have people like the Governor who want to work to find solutions practices to those problems we have.”

Click here to watch a video recording of the news conference.

Other topics discussed during the news conference included infrastructure at land ports of entry and immigration. García Cabeza de Vaca was in Washington to meet with members of Congress and the heads of various federal agencies. Discussion with these agencies included the subjects of immigration, border security and foreign trade.

During the first day of activities, the governor met with U.S. Sen. John Cornyn. 

On the second day he participated in a panel discussion on the economy, border security, and migration  with Cuellar and Anthony Wayne, former US Ambassador to Mexico and vice president of The Mexico Institute. The event was hosted by The Wilson Center. The panel addressed actions to generate competitiveness on both sides of the border, including foreign trade, border security, migration and good neighborhood between both borders.

García Cabeza de Vaca also held a working meeting with Erik Moncayo, deputy commissioner for International Affairs of the Department of Customs and Border Protection (CBP).

The Governor of Tamaulipas also spoke with Christopher Landau, ambassador of the United States of America in Mexico. The ambassador expressed his intention to visit Tamaulipas soon.

The agenda at the U.S. capitol continued with a series of meetings, including visits with U.S. Reps. Cuellar, Vicente González, Jesús García Albio Sires and Luis Correa, who deal with border-related issues such as development, migration, and security.

Another meeting included officials from the State Department in the Pentagon, including Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary Ian G. Brownlee.

Another meeting included visits with U.S. Reps. Ruben Gallego, Darren Soto, and Xochitl Torres Small, and a meeting with senior staffers with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi.