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At least 19 charred bodies were located this Saturday on a rural road in the municipality of Miguel Alemán, in northern Mexico and bordering the United States, the Tamaulipas state prosecutor’s office reported.
State police, in response to a citizen report, located in a breach “two burned vehicles, as well as the remains of people,” says a statement from the prosecution.
Two charred corpses were in the front seats of one of the vehicles – a cargo van – two others outside and 15 in the back, the statement said.
According to the first investigations, “the death was caused by firearm projectiles and then they were set on fire,” the statement added.
However, no percussion caps were located at the site, so the prosecution indicates that the victims could have been killed elsewhere.
The municipality of Miguel Alemán, with about 20,000 inhabitants, is located on the border of the state of Nuevo León and is on the border with the American Roma, Texas.
The prosecution indicated that it has entered into communication with authorities in Nuevo León to carry out a joint investigation.
– Dispute over the territory –
Local media publish versions of residents who point out that the charred bodies were those of gunmen who had been shot.
This area is the scene of disputes between the Northeast cartel, which controls part of Nuevo León, and the Gulf cartel, which has operated in Tamaulipas for decades.
In January 2019, also in Miguel Alemán, 24 dead bodies were found, 15 of them burned, in addition to five trucks, also set on fire, after clashes between criminal groups.
Mexico suffers a wave linked to organized crime, especially drug cartels that dispute the routes to the United States.
Since December 2006, when the federal government launched a controversial anti-drug operation, there have been more than 300,000 violent deaths, the majority in criminal acts, according to official counts.
President Andrés Manuel López Obrador, who as an opponent was critical of the military operation, has followed a similar strategy with the creation of the National Guard, which has deployed thousands of elements in the north.
Analysts point out that one of the challenges for Mexico in its relationship with the new US president, Democrat Joe Biden, will be the fight against drugs as the military strategy seems exhausted.
López Obrador also seeks to end the Merida Initiative, a cooperation agreement through which the United States provides security assistance to Mexico.
In December, after the capture in Los Angeles of former Defense Minister Salvador Cienfuegos accused of drug trafficking, Mexican legislators voted on a legal reform that limits the performance of foreign agents in Mexico.
Cienfuegos was turned over to Mexico for an eventual trial, but was exonerated by the attorney general’s office while the Mexican government released the DEA file on Cienfuegos, which was criticized by the US Department of Justice.
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