Veterans Call for Mexican Boycott Over Jailed Marine

Wednesday, 25 Jun 2014 02:06 PM

By Drew MacKenzie

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A veterans organization has called on Americans to boycott Mexican products and vacations until jailed U.S. Marine Sgt. Andrew Tahmooressi is freed, The Washington Times reported.

Tahmooressi, 25, of Weston, Florida, has been held in a Mexican jail for nearly three months after he crossed the border carrying three firearms not registered in the country.

Now the Veterans of Foreign Wars, the nation’s oldest and largest veterans group, is demanding his safe return while urging a boycott until his release.

"This combat Marine has been languishing away since he was arrested March 31 for allegedly crossing the border accidentally with three personal firearms that were legally registered in the [United States] but not in Mexico," said VFW National Commander William Thien, according to the Times. "It was a mistake, but so is the Mexican government’s reluctance to release him unharmed back to the U.S."

Thien said he has urged President Barack Obama to intervene by calling Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto, but his request failed to result in a phone call between the two leaders.

Now Thien believes that a boycott is the only way to force Mexico to act.

"This is about politics, and if my government won’t do anything, then I guess we need to let the power of the purse take over," he said. "No products, no travel, a total boycott. Then maybe a dialogue will start."

Thien said Tahmooressi’s arrest is similar to the case of former Marine Jon Hammer, who was held prisoner in Mexico for four months in 2012 after being arrested for carrying an antique shotgun across the border, the Times said.

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