Gun­bat­tle kills 11 in western Mex­i­can town

The Pak Banker - - 6international -

MEX­ICO CITY: A gun­bat­tle be­tween ri­val gangs killed 11 peo­ple dur­ing a Vir­gin of Guadalupe cel­e­bra­tion in a western Mex­i­can town, au­thor­i­ties said Satur­day.

Armed men ar­rived in three cars and opened fire on an­other group of gun­men in the main plaza of Te­cal­it­lan just as a crowd was gath­er­ing Fri­day night, the Jalisco state at­tor­ney gen­eral's of­fice said in a state­ment. One of the gun­men hurled a grenade.

Eight men were killed at the scene and two oth­ers died at a hos­pi­tal, the of­fice said.

An­other man, the brother of one of those killed in the plaza, was found shot to death next to a car on the high­way just out­side the small town, the state­ment said.

In­side the car, which had been re­ported stolen, au­thor­i­ties found two banners. One read: "We haven't come to kill in­no­cent peo­ple. We've come for El Zopi­lote." The other said: "We do not charge quo­tas."

Pho­to­graphs of the af­ter­math showed over­turned chairs in front of a stage where a mari­achi band was set to play. A large im­age of the Vir­gin of Guadalupe loomed over the scene.

Po­lice were in­ves­ti­gat­ing whether the death of two other men, whose torched re­mains were found in­side a car in the nearby town of Zapotiltic, were tied to the Te­cal­it­lan shootout.

In Te­cal­it­lan, po­lice re­cov­ered a grenade launcher and bul­let clips for AK-47 and AR15 ri­fles.

The banners and the weapons sug­gested the gun­men were drug gang mem­bers, but au­thor­i­ties had no in­for­ma­tion on the sus­pects or mo­tive for the shoot­ing.

Te­cal­it­lan

is

near Mi­choa­can state, where La Fa­milia car­tel leader Nazario Moreno Gon­za­lez was killed this week in two days of shootouts be­tween gun­men and fed­eral po­lice.

At least 11 other peo­ple were killed in the vi­o­lence in Mi­choa­can, in­clud­ing a baby and a teenage girl. Car­tel gun­men at­tacked mo­torists and used their ve­hi­cles as bar­ri­cades across the state to pre­vent fed­eral po­lice from send­ing re­in­force­ments to Apatzin­gan, the town where the govern­ment says Moreno was killed in a shootout Thurs­day.

The govern­ment says car­tel gun­men fled with some of their dead and Moreno's body has not been re­cov­ered.

Mex­ico's bloody drug war has claimed more than 28,000 lives since Pres­i­dent Felipe Calderon in­ten­si­fied a crack­down on car­tels when he took of­fice in late 2006. -Ap

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