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0 Mexico’s deadly drug violence claims hundreds of lives in past 5 days

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"The origin of our violence problem begins with the fact that Mexico is located next to the country that has the highest levels of drug consumption in the world," Calderón wrote. "It is as if our neighbor were the biggest drug addict in the world." The cartels, he said, have grown rich and bold -- fed with billions of dollars from the United States. Experts estimate that $10 billion to $25 billion in drug profits flow to Mexico each year from the north. About 90 percent of the cocaine consumed in the United States passes through Mexico, which also smuggles at least half of the marijuana and methamphetamine sold in U.S. cities. Meanwhile, many of the weapons the cartels use, including grenades and military-style assault rifles, are smuggled into Mexico from the United States.

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