Ciudad Juárez, Mexico, Aug 12 (EFE).- A day after Mexico’s border city Ciudad Juárez experienced its most violent day of the year when a prison clash spilled into the streets, leaving at least 11 dead, organizations and the public called on authorities Friday to ensure the perpetrators do not go unpunished.
The violence began with a fight between members of two rival cartels in a Ciudad Juárez prison, which turned into a riot, leaving two shot to death and around 20 injured or wounded.
In a press conference, Chihuahua state attorney general Roberto Javier Fierro Duarte said one of the gangs, Los Mexicles, then began a rampage against civilians in the city.
Gang members burned businesses and shot at civilians, including killing four staff of a local radio station who were broadcasting outside a business, and a boy who died after a shooting at a convenience store. Two women and two men were killed elsewhere in the city.
The attacks on citizens resulted in at least those nine deaths, on top of the two inside the prison, said Deputy Security Minister Ricardo Mejia during the daily presidential press conference.
Fierro Duarte also referred to 12 injured people and said that so far 10 suspects have been arrested.
Regarding the death of the MegaRadio staff, including announcer Allan González, the Mexican government directed the case to the government’s mechanism for the protection of journalists.
In a statement, the National Chamber of the Radio and Television Industry deplored and condemned the events and called for the Mexican State to enact the “necessary measures to eradicate criminal conduct that impairs the exercise of journalistic work and takes away the tranquility of society.”
In addition, it said that the radio station staff “were clearly attacked for their professional work and as part of the strategy of organized crime to sow panic among the population.”
The Business Coordinating Council also strongly condemned the violence and said it deeply regretted the death of civilians at the hands of organized crime, “which seeks to destabilize and instill fear among Mexican families” and demanded that the authorities guarantee the security and rights of Mexicans.
“This wave of violence in Juarez is difficult. I don’t know why the authorities don’t get their act together and get to work catching criminals,” worker Omar Ramírez told EFE.
He said the situation affects society “because we cannot go out into the streets. Yesterday they announced a curfew – they want to lock us up in the houses instead of going after the criminals.”
Another, Manuel Gómez, said that “the devil is on the loose. One can no longer go anywhere in (Juárez). Yesterday the streets were deserted.”
The events reflect the wave of violence in Mexico, which registered 33,315 homicides in 2021 after the two most violent years in its history, under the mandate of López Obrador, with 34,690 murder victims in 2019 and 34,554 in 2020. EFE