Sunday, April 04, 2010

Border drug war: Violence wears on Valley of Juárez residents

El Porvenir is about 40 miles east of Juárez in a sparsely populated part of Mexico. Fewer than 18,000 people live in the low-income communities between El Porvenir and Juárez, but the area has become a place of rampant death threats and murders. In March, more than 50 people died violently in the Valley of Juárez. About 180 homicides occurred in Juárez during that time. Morales said it has become increasingly difficult to run his store, La Ferreteria Y Carpinteria, because about half of his customers have fled the town. Across the border from the valley are Texas towns stretching from San Elizario to Fort Hancock. Hudspeth County Sheriff Arvin West recently said that Mexicans crossing into the U.S. were abandoning El Porvenir because criminal organizations had posted notices near the center of the colonia, ordering the residents to get out. The notices said people had 30 days to vacate or their families would be kidnapped or killed...more

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