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News Americas, WASHINGTON, D.C., Weds. July 13, 2011: New U.S. government rules that will affect gun dealers in Texas, California, Arizona and New Mexico is the latest shot fired against the flow of guns into Mexico.

Weapons dealers in the south-west US are now required to report large sales of some semi-automatic firearms. The regulation will require dealers to contact the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) if one individual purchases more than two semi-automatic rifles, within a five-day period, that accept detachable magazines and use ammunition larger than .22 caliber.

The weapons are reportedly sought after by drug-trafficking organizations operating inside Mexico.

“The international expansion and increased violence of transnational criminal networks pose a significant threat to the United States,” Deputy Attorney General James Cole said in a statement.

In January, the Mexican government released figures suggesting that at least 34,612 people had died in drug-related violence in Mexico since December 2006.

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