This week we bring you a report on the security situation in Mexico in February from HX-Harary Security. It offers a detailed look at incidents across the country and makes for useful, yet grim, reading.
Mexico Security Summary for March 2016
By most measures, March displayed an overall decline in public safety across key areas of Mexico. For example, the number of attacks directed against government authorities has continued its climb since early 2015. The same is true for the number of street battles; with March recording the highest number in almost a year. While the total number of homicides is not yet available, the number of attacks directed against public venues also surged along with related casualties during March. Finally, the number of attacks relating to extortion operations showed an increase as well this month.
Tamaulipas and Veracruz showed dramatic increases in violence during March, while Chihuahua Guerrero, and Sinaloa actually marked declines. Despite evidence to the contrary, Mexico’s head of the Interior Ministry (Miguel Angel Osorio Chong) claimed that “violence had actually been reduced in Tamaulipas”. His comments were made on a visit to Washington D.C. and they did include a recognition that security will not be brought to the region in two years, rather it will be a matter of “much more time”.
At least 100 people were killed in attacks directed against public venues such as restaurants, bars, shopping areas, fiestas, and a public swimming pool. There were at least 51 of these attacks this month. Both the number of attacks and the number of victims is the highest since January 2014. In one incident, at least five people were killed and 15 injured when gunmen opened fire at a dance in San Miguel Totolapan, Guerrero. Also, a woman was injured when gunmen attacked a dentist office in Tijuana, Baja California. These attacks occurred in 15 states (Baja California, DF, Edomex, Guanajuato, Guerrero, Jalisco, Michoacán, Nuevo León, Oaxaca, Puebla, Quintana Roo, San Luis Potosí, Tabasco, Tamaulipas, and Veracruz). By far most of the incidents were in Guerrero, Oaxaca, and Veracruz.
At least 600 additional people were killed as a result of organized crime across Mexico this month. There were also many cases where there is no clear relationship between the victims and the perpetrators. For example, gunmen on a motorcycle gunned down a woman on a street in San Pedro Cholula, Puebla. A woman was killed while picking up her daughter from school in León, Guanajuato. In another case, a father was gunned down as he dropped his child off at school in Acapulco. Elsewhere, a woman was gunned down outside her home while her husband was kidnapped by the same assailants in Escobedo, Nuevo León.
An attorney was executed inside his office in Xalapa, Veracruz. At least 8 taxi drivers were killed this month in Guerrero, Michoacán, Tamaulipas, and Veracruz. Also, five people were injured when gunmen opened fire on a taxi stand in Acapulco, Guerrero. Two taxis were destroyed by arson in Papantla, Veracruz.
A family of three (including two minors) was killed by gunmen outside their home in Chalco, Edomex. Two other people were injured during the attack. Gunmen murdered a mother and her two children in broad daylight in Tonalá, Jalisco. They then set the victims’ corpses on fire in the street. Also, at least three dozen women were executed in DF, Edomex, Guanajuato, Guerrero, Michoacán, Oaxaca, Puebla (at least 15 in the state of Puebla so far in 2016), Quintana Roo, and Veracruz.
Also, mass deposits of victims’ bodies were found at 54 locations across 18 states (Baja California, Chihuahua, Coahuila, Colima, DF, Edomex, Guerrero, Jalisco, Michoacán, Morelos, Nuevo León, Oaxaca, Puebla, Sinaloa, Tabasco, Tamaulipas, Veracruz, and Zacatecas). These homicides were most prevalent in Veracruz, followed by Guerrero and Tamaulipas. These sites contained the remains of at least 172 victims. There was also a notable uptick in the number of decapitations this month. Decapitated heads (or headless bodies) were found at various sites in Chihuahua, Edomex, Guerrero, Morelos, Oaxaca, Tamaulipas, and Veracruz. Also, a body processing facility was discovered in San Andrés Calpan, Puebla. At least 10 barrels contained solvents and remains of as many as 12 victims.
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HX / Harary Security Group has established itself as one of the leading security consulting firms in Mexico.
Established in 1996 by Jack Harary, his more than 30 years of experience in all aspects of security have proven his value in Mexicos’ demanding environment.
HX / Harary Security is a world-class consultancy which prides itself on cutting edge services. We are frequently called on and consult with leading Fortune 500 companies like Coca Cola and government organizations like the United Nations. We also service high profile clientele and expatriates to help secure their families, corporate headquarters, factories, warehouses and private residences. You can count on us to meet your security needs.
Featured image: Sunrise, Jalisco by Enrique L on Flickr