Vi­o­lent week­end leaves 22 dead in north­ern Mexico

The China Post - - INTERNATIONAL -

Author­i­ties found five bod­ies in Mexico’s north­ern state of Nuevo Leon on Sun­day, adding to three days of vi­o­lence that left 22 peo­ple dead in the re­gion.

The half-naked bod­ies of three peo­ple aged 18 to 30 were dis­cov­ered in var­i­ous streets of San Pe­dro, a sub­urb of the in­dus­trial hub of Mon­ter­rey, the town gov­ern­ment said.

There were no bullet shells near the bod­ies, sug­gest­ing that the vic­tims were killed else­where and then dumped on the street.

“They were ex­e­cuted. It was a reprisal, with­out a doubt,” said a state in­ves­ti­ga­tor on con­di­tion of anonymity, adding that each body had a head wound.

Author­i­ties are in­ves­ti­gat­ing whether the killings are linked to the re­cent fir­ing of 20 mu­nic­i­pal of­fi­cers, as one body was left near the house of a rel­a­tive of the po­lice chief, the city gov­ern­ment said in a state­ment.

Two other bod­ies were found else­where around Mon­ter­rey.

At least 17 other peo­ple were killed in Nuevo Leon since Fri­day.

The bod­ies of four peo­ple, in­clud­ing preg­nant woman, were found in a house in Mon­ter­rey on Satur­day.

On Fri­day, 10 men were killed when gun­men stormed a beer dis­tri­bu­tion cen­ter in broad day­light in Gar­cia, another Mon­ter­rey sub­urb

Seven of the bod­ies were found naked or half-naked in what in­ves­ti­ga­tors be­lieve was re­lated to a dis­pute be­tween crim­i­nal or­ga­ni­za­tions.

Raul Ben­itez, a se­cu­rity ex­pert at the Na­tional Au­ton­o­mous Univer­sity of Mexico, told AFP that the vi­o­lence could mean that the ri­val Zetas and Gulf car­tels “are be­gin­ning to move their con­fronta­tion to Nuevo Leon.”

The two gangs have mostly bat­tled in the neigh­bor­ing state of Ta­mauli­pas.

Nuevo Leon was the scene of grue­some vi­o­lence in the past but had been in rel­a­tive peace in the last two years.

Ben­itez said the vi­o­lence could also be linked to power shifts fol­low­ing June 7 midterm elec­tions in a coun­try where pol­i­tics and crime of­ten in­ter­sect.

Jaime “El Bronco” Ro­driguez, a for­mer mayor of Gar­cia who de­fied the Zetas, made history by win­ning the Nuevo Leon gover­nor’s race, be­com­ing the first in­de­pen­dent to win a state house in Mexico.

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