Wednesday, September 08, 2010

Mexican drug wars fester along US border

Deaths and threats happen all around Mexico, but in recent months Tamaulipas has displaced Pacific Coast states like Sinaloa and Baja California when it comes to high-impact violence. Tamaulipas is the end of the shortest route for drugs and illegal immigrants into the US. It accounts for about 3 per cent of Mexican homicides, a figure that is growing, according to Mexican officials. The Calderon government attributes the worsening of the war in northeastern Mexico to the split between the Gulf Cartel and Los Zetas, according to the Calderon government's security spokesman Alejandro Poire. The two groups had cooperated for more than a decade. The fight has drawn in other cartels like the Sinaloa Cartel of drug lord Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman and La Familia Michoacana, a bitter enemy of Los Zetas, who stepped into Tamaulipas to help the Gulf Cartel. "Tamaulipas is a strategic point to take drugs in and out of the United States, since it has a vast coastline and important cities like Nuevo Laredo, Miguel Aleman, Reynosa, Rio Bravo and Matamoros, which are the closest destinations for the criminals who move drugs through the Gulf of Mexico," the government report said. Nowadays the cartels' business reaches well beyond drugs, and that explains last week's migrant massacre and many attacks on bars, butchers' shops, bakeries, funeral homes and media outlets...more

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