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Mayor killed in Mexico region plagued by organized crime

By AFP

March 31, 2024 05:02 PM


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A mayor was shot dead at a restaurant in Mexico on Saturday, the regional prosecutor's office said, the latest politically related killing in the country plagued by violence and organized crime.

Guillermo Torres, 39, and his 14-year-old son were attacked at a restaurant in Morelia, the capital of western Michoacan state, the prosecutor's office said in a statement. His son survived.

He was elected mayor of Michoacan's Churumuco municipality as a member of the Institutional Revolutionary Party in 2022, but recently quit the party and publically voiced sympathy for the ruling Morena, according to local media.

Torres is the latest politician to be murdered in Mexico in the run-up to the presidential elections on June 2, in which 20,000 local and federal positions and the entire Congress will be voted on.

Two mayoral candidates were murdered on February 26: Miguel Angel Zavala Reyes and Armando Perez Luna of the Morena and National Action Party, respectively.

Between June 4, 2023, and March 26 this year, 50 people have been murdered in "episodes of electoral violence", 26 of them aiming for popular seats, according to a report by the Laboratorio Electoral think tank.

Michoacan state, Mexico's main avocado-producing region, is the scene of constant fighting between organized crime groups, including the powerful Jalisco New Generation Cartel.

In February, four military personnel were killed and nine others injured when their military patrol came under attack with explosives while tracking down a criminal group.

Killings and abductions are daily occurrences in Mexico, where nearly 450,000 people have been murdered since 2006 in a spiral of drug-related violence, according to official data.


AFP


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