The Secretary of Defense (SEDENA)

Gun stores per capita: 1 gun store per 8,851,000 people

Deputy Consul General Marcela Celorio explained, "The Mexican government is the only one who can sell guns. The only legal and authorized place to buy guns in Mexico is from the Secretary of Defense (SEDENA), particularly, the Dirección de Comercialización de Armas y Municiones. The SEDENA also is the one who can issue a permit to buy guns. All of this is according to our Constitution, article 10."

According to Mexican law, "Mexico has an express provision in its Constitution that recognizes the right of inhabitants to bear arms. This right extends to the possession of arms at one's home for security and legitimate defense, with the exception of weapons that are prohibited by federal law and those reserved for the exclusive use of the Army, Navy, Air Force, and National Guard." 

"Mexico's federal gun control statute … is very strict, and enforcement tends to be oppressive and corrupt. Accordingly, many Mexicans obtain firearms outside of [these] very narrow channels," reports David Kopel at the Washington Post. "Fourteen percent of Mexican households have a firearm, including 50 percent of poor households in high violence areas. In many parts of Mexico, the government does not reliably protect citizens from violence, so citizens must protect themselves."

A challenge that Mexico faces is that legal guns stolen from the US or those allowed to "walk" during Operation Fast and Furious frequently turn up at crime scenes, negating the effectiveness of Mexico's gun control measures.     

Kopel reports, "18% of Mexican crime guns can be conclusively determined to have come from the United States." Mexico pushes the US to adopt gun policies similar to its own.

Harvard scholar Viridiana Ríos points out that "illegal drug cartels run their violent operations in less than a third of all Mexican municipal districts." While many parts of Mexico still suffer from the effects of gun and drug violence, Mexico City is one of the safer cities in the country. The city has hosted gun buyback programs and the sentiment tends to be in favor of promoting an unarmed citizenry, often in opposition to many towns near the U.S. border.

The city is not completely immune to gun violence, however, as drug addiction to once mainly exported substances has recently climbed in certain parts of the city.