REYNOSA, Tamaulipas — Law enforcement officials in the Mexican border state Tamaulipas continue to claim that the security situation in the state is improving. However, on Wednesday morning the citizens of the Mexican border city Reynosa, just south of the Texas Border, awoke to the sound of gunfire.
The shootouts started just before 8 a.m. in the downtown area from where it spread out to two other areas leading to a series of roadblocks, a Tamaulipas law enforcement official confirmed to Breitbart Texas asking that his name be withheld citing security reasons.
In the downtown area a gunmen died inside a white SUV along the Hidalgo shopping district which is generally used by pedestrians and families but on Wednesday appeared deserted as business owners stayed clear of the area as authorities gathered the body and had the vehicle towed.
While Mexican news outlets in Reynosa stayed clear of the areas of conflict, citizen journalists took to social media since the early morning warning each other about the areas to avoid. For @MrCruzStar, a citizen journalist who has helped fill the gap left by conventional media, Wednesday began just like another day of “situations of risk” the term used to refer to shootouts. The citizen journalist is careful to never show his face or give out his real name because doing so would be akin to a death sentence by members of organized crime who are trying to keep a low profile.
Soon after the shootouts in the downtown area, citizen journalists began reporting about a series of road spikes that were thrown by gunmen along the highway that connects Rio Bravo and Reynosa and also about the shootouts and pursuits on the city’s western side. As of press time, Mexican officials had not given an official body count resulting from the shootouts.
Upon learning of the shootouts, @MrCruzStar began documenting and reporting on the details and location of the shootouts which will likely never be told by Mexican media.
On Tuesday, Miguel Angel Osorio Chong, Mexico’s Interior Minister praised the federal security strategy currently being undertaken in Tamaulipas which he claimed has dramatically lowered the crime rate.
“Practically in all of the crime we have a lowered the rates in the first six months; particularly in states like Tamaulipas, where we have seen a systematic continuous decrease in crime,” Osorio Chong said in a prepared statement following his meeting with other officials in Tamaulipas. ”
The political propaganda spread by Mexican officials is nothing new to citizen journalists who continue their work day in and day out placing themselves at risk to get the reality of life on the border.
“The official line currently being given by the government is that the security strategy is successful and acknowledging shootouts or sending news releases would show that the situation remains the same,” @MrCruzStar told Breitbart Texas.
Tamaulipas state officials issued a news release Thursday morning confirming that a Mexican soldier had died during a gunfight in the city’s downtown area.