MCALLEN, Texas — The U.S. Department of State has renewed their existing Mexico Travel Warning revealing that the border state of Tamaulipas has nonexistent law enforcement capabilities. “U.S. citizens have been the victims of violent crimes such as homicide, kidnapping, carjacking and robbery by organized criminal groups in various Mexican states” the first paragraph of the travel warning revealed.
According to the Department of State, in 2015, 103 U.S. citizens were murdered in Mexico. The figure shows a slight increase over 2014 when only 100 citizens were murdered.
Breitbart Texas reported on the previous travel warning which showed a grim increase in violence for Mexico which paints an even darker picture when compared to the current warning.
Since 2013, 281 American citizens have been murdered in Mexico.
The Department of State paid special attention to Tamaulipas noting that “State and municipal law enforcement capacity is limited to nonexistent in many parts of Tamaulipas.”
Throughout Tamaulipas, criminal organizations have been carrying out homicides, armed robberies, kidnappings, extortions and sexual assaults. One of the particular crimes mentioned is the kidnapping of commercial buses where the passengers are held for ransom by organized crime groups or cartels.
In regards to large scale gun battles, authorities warn that they can take place at all times of day and anywhere in Tamaulipas. During those gun battles, cartel members have used explosive devices.
In regards to the violence in other states, the travel warning revealed that “Gun battles between rival criminal organizations or with Mexican authorities have taken place in towns and cities in many parts of Mexico and have occurred in broad daylight on streets and in other public venues, such as restaurants and clubs.”
During those battles American citizens have been trapped as cartel members block off streets using buses, stolen cars and trucks. Officials warn that there is no way to predict future gun battles and advises travelers to avoid those cities.
The Department of State noted that the Mexican government has deployed military and police assets to try and secure public highways which have been the scenes of shootouts, carjackings and highway robbery. Military officials have at times set up roadblocks, however the travel warning also points out that drug cartels also set up their own roadblocks and American tourists should cooperate if stopped at a cartel roadblock.
“In some places, criminal organizations have erected their own unauthorized checkpoints, at times wearing police and military uniforms, and have killed or abducted motorists who have failed to stop at them. You should cooperate at all checkpoints.”
In the once tranquil area of Baja California, authorities warn travelers to “use caution” since the region has seen a spike in murders tied to drug cartel turf battles.
The State Department also warned tourists about the border states of Chihuahua and Coahuila warning them about highway travel and to exercise caution over continuing criminal activity. Authorities also warned about traveling through Sonora since the area is considered a top drug and human smuggling corridor.