Mexico: 7.7K pre-election murders in last 3 mos.

Monday, April 23, 2018
 | 
Michael F. Haverluck (OneNewsNow.com)

Mexican President Enrique Pena NietoAs Mexico prepares to vote for a new president this summer, Mexican drug cartels are warning politicians to “drop out or be killed,” and the murder rate shot up 20 percent after 7,667 were violently killed in the first quarter this year.

“A fresh wave of violence is sweeping through Mexico as the country prepares to choose its new president on July 1,” Newsweek reported. “Powerful drug cartels are battling for influence and have been targeting politicians they think might get in their way.”

Polishing off politicians

At least 82 political candidates and public officeholders have been murdered since the current electoral season commenced in September 2017, according to the latest statistics divulged from a Reuters investigation.

“Those killed come from across the political spectrum, and most were running for local positions – rather than high-profile national posts,” Newsweek’s David Brennan noted. “Drug lords are hoping to install lawmakers they know and trust to ensure that their lucrative trade is allowed to continue.”

As politicians and drug lords vie for power before the July election – when two branches of Congress and a number of local seats will be voted on, along with the president – there are no signs that the escalation in deadly violence will subside any time soon.

“At least four politicians have been killed in the past week alone, as candidates vie for around 3,400 positions – a record number,” Brennan added. “If cartels can get their allies into office, local government offers a source of well-paid contracts and bribes. Local police forces can even be forced into working for and protecting the cartels.”

Those seeking to eradicate the drug problem are literally under fire, and when attempts are made to bring the criminals to justice for shootings and slayings, virtually none of the suspects end up behind bars.

“Many have been targeted for opposing drug cartels – or conspiring with them,” the Latestly News Agency pointed out. “In most cases, the killers remain at large – some statistics put the unsolved rate at 97 percent of Mexico's staggering murder tally – but officials largely blame organized crime for the politicians' deaths.”

For more than a decade, being a on the ballot in Mexico often goes hand-in-hand with being on a hit list.

“But the number of political leaders coming in the crosshairs of narco-gangs has only gone up each year [since 2012],” the agency continued. “One estimate says 172 politicians have been killed since 2006 – when Mexico launched its war on drugs.”

Scary statistics staying south of the border?

Figures released by the Mexican government on Sunday show that so far, 2018 is Mexico’s most violent year in two decades, registering 2,549 murders in January, 2,389 in February and 2,729 in March – with fatal shootings claiming most of the lives.

But last year was an extremely violent year for America’s neighbor to the south, as well.

“In 2017, the figure stood at 6,406 violent deaths, according to the Mexican security services,” AFP divulged in a Breitbart News report. “In 2017, a total of 25,339 people were killed in Mexico – the highest number since monitoring began 10 years earlier.”

The escalating trend of lethal violence has continued for years.

“2016 saw 20,792 homicides in Mexico – a 22-percent increase over 2015, and a 35-percent jump over 2014,” the Latestly News Team revealed.

The violence that President Donald Trump has tried to keep south of the border via a wall and increased border security has manifested in a number of ways throughout Mexico.

“The bloodshed follows a proliferation of gangs involved in drug trafficking, as well as stealing fuel, kidnappings, extortion and other criminal activities,” AFP continued.

Politicians not the only ones …

But politicians are not the only group in Mexico that have been under siege by drug traffickers.

“Though the killings of politicians in such large numbers is a relatively new phenomenon, journalists, activists and other noncombatants have long been targeted by cartels,” Latestly stressed. “For example, Mexico leads Latin America in the killings of Roman Catholic priests.”

In fact, brutally murdered priests have become commonplace south of the border for most of the decade.

“Authorities in Mexico say a priest has been killed in the west-central state of Jalisco – the second cleric slain in the country this week,” the news agency continued. “The Catholic Multimedia Center says that 33-year-old Juan Miguel Contreras Garcia was shot dead late on Friday, April 20, on the outskirts of Guadalajara, [while] at least four priests have been murdered in Mexico in 2018 – and at least 23 have been murdered since 2012.”

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