Gunmen block roads in Mexico's drug-plagued north

Gunmen block roads in Mexico's drug-plagued north

Armed men likely linked to drug gangs blocked highways with trucks and buses in the northern Mexican city of Monterrey on Friday in an apparent attempt to hamper army operations near the U.S. border, Reuters reported.

Gunmen pulled truck and bus drivers out of their vehicles in the wealthy business city and used them to set up blockades on major four-lane highways, sometimes slashing tires to make it harder to tow them away, police and motorists said.

Some similar roadblocks were set up on Thursday.

Monterrey Mayor Fernando Larrazabal suggested drug trafficking cartels were setting up the roadblocks as a way to derail anti-drug operations by security forces.

"The blockades that we are seeing ... could be actions by people linked to organized crime to block avenues and delay federal, state or municipal forces in some operations," he told the Milenio TV network.

Groups of mainly young men wielding pistols began blocking roads on Thursday afternoon, parking trailers and SUVs across highways and setting some on fire. Police said no one has been hurt in the incidents, and no arrests were made as gunmen fled from each roadblock once they had positioned vehicles.

Police used tow trucks to gradually unblock the roads by Friday afternoon, easing traffic jams in the city.

"I saw how a group of men with guns forced a water truck driver out of his vehicle and then turned the truck across the lanes to stop all the traffic," one motorist told local radio, without giving his name.

Drug violence has exploded across Mexico since President Felipe Calderon came to power in late 2006 and set the army on smuggling gangs. Turf wars between rival cartels and security forces have killed nearly 19,000 people in three years, with the worst of the bloodshed seen in northern border cities.

Larrazabal said there had been 16 road blockades in the municipality of Monterrey, a modern manufacturing city inland from the border but close to Texas, over the past two days. Local radio counted several more in surrounding areas.

Considered one of Latin America's premier business cities, Monterrey has been increasingly engulfed by violent crime as battles between rival gangs spill into once tranquil parts of Mexico, alarming Washington, foreign investors and tourists.

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert Gates are due in Mexico City on Tuesday to discuss escalating violence with Calderon following the killing of three people linked to the U.S. consulate in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico's most violent drug war city.

Drug killings have surged in recent weeks as the Gulf cartel, which controls most trafficking corridors through Monterrey, split from its former armed wing, the Zetas, in a battle that is escalating violence along the border.

Subscribe to Trend in Google News! Subscribe
1 dead, 33 injured in restaurant explosion in northeast China
1 dead, 33 injured in restaurant explosion in northeast China
India for including TRIPS waiver proposal in WTO’s response package
India for including TRIPS waiver proposal in WTO’s response package
U.S. FDA clears Moderna, J&J COVID-19 boosters, backs use of different vaccine for boost
U.S. FDA clears Moderna, J&J COVID-19 boosters, backs use of different vaccine for boost
Loading Bars
Latest
1 dead, 33 injured in restaurant explosion in northeast China
Iran, Kazakhstan urged to set out a new framework for bilateral ties
Number of beneficiaries receiving subsistence allowance increases in Georgia
ADB to prioritize Uzbekistan’s transformation to market-based economy through reforms (Exclusive)
COVID-19: New cases slightly up in Kazakhstan
India for including TRIPS waiver proposal in WTO’s response package
U.S. FDA clears Moderna, J&J COVID-19 boosters, backs use of different vaccine for boost
India plans to send 50,000 MT of wheat, medical aid to Afghanistan: Report
17 killed in car crash in Egypt
WHO Director General has lauded India's Covid vaccination efforts: Health Minister
Canada to unveil vaccine passport plans Thursday
Covaxin instilled self-confidence: ICMR chief
India: Adani Ports to shun cargo from Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iran
U.S. readies plan to vaccinate kids ages 5-11 against COVID-19
India, Israel agree on mutual recognition of Covid-19 vaccination certificates
Chronicles of Victory: President Ilham Aliyev interviewed by Japan’s Nikkei newspaper on October 21, 2020 (PHOTO/VIDEO)
Chronicles of Victory: October 21, 2020
Trilateral meeting of Deputy PMs of Azerbaijan, Armenia and Russia held in Moscow
President Ilham Aliyev: October 20 will remain eternal Victory Day both for residents of Zangilan and for our entire people
First VP Mehriban Aliyeva shares footages from her visit to liberated Zangilan with President Ilham Aliyev (VIDEO)
Kazakh and Russian PMs hold talks
SOCAR AQS, Naftogaz ink MoU for dev’t of onshore, offshore technologies
President Ilham Aliyev: After a long break - 27 years of Armenian occupation, Zangilan returned to its homeland
Mikheil Saakashvili charged with illegal border crossing
Plan initiated to prosecute int'l companies for illegal exploitation of Vejnali gold deposit - president
Modern transport and logistics center, and necessary infrastructure to be created in Zangilan - President Aliyev
Iran's Energy Exchange announces products to be on sale on October 23
Certain contracts signed in Iran on manufacturing of spare car parts
Recent events on opening of Zangazur corridor show that we achieving our goals - Azerbaijani president
Azerbaijan strengthened its army, economy, international positions - President Aliyev
This is our common victory, victory of Azerbaijani people - President Aliyev
Azerbaijan to try resettle people in Zangilan by early next, maybe by late this year - President Aliyev
Turkey unveils number of ships received at local ports in September
Leading private Uzbek banks in terms of deposits
Funds allocated to draw up master plan for liberated Zangilan city
Leading Uzbek banks with state share in terms of deposits
David Babayan on private visit in Moscow - Azerbaijani Embassy in Russia
Iran`s TEDPIX drops on Wednesday
Azerbaijan reveals latest data on loan portfolio of local banks
Azerbaijani FM, US Assistant Secretary of State hold phone talks
Uzbek Central bank publishes list of leading non-state banks in terms of loans
EBRD keen to create base of integrated supply chains in "Seaport Aktau" SEZ
Kazakhstan launches polymetallic processing plant in Karaganda region
Azerbaijan raises metallurgical production
Leading Uzbek banks with state share in terms of loans
Britain's Lloyds Bank to close another 48 branches
Nasdaq profit beats on robust demand for investment products
Geely and Volvo's Lynk & Co set to expand to Gulf region in Q4 2021
Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev and First Lady Mehriban Aliyeva meet with public representatives of Zangilan
Coronavirus situation in Russia becoming complicated — Putin
Dynamics of Azerbaijan’s electricity generation by 2025
President Ilham Aliyev and First Lady Mehriban Aliyeva take part in opening of Zangilan substation
Azerbaijani president, first lady attend groundbreaking ceremony for digital substation in Zangilan
President Ilham Aliyev and First Lady Mehriban Aliyeva view conditions in military unit of State Border Guard Service in Zangilan district
Azerbaijani president, First lady view process of construction of International Airport in Zangilan
Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev and First Lady Mehriban Aliyeva view work done under "smart village" project in Aghali village
Waze: Traffic on Israel's roads 23% higher than pre-Covid
Azerbaijan's trade turnover with CIS countries grows in 9M2021
Iran unveils amount of money saved through domestic production
Azerbaijan announces increase in petrochemicals production for 9M2021
Azerbaijan records growth in agricultural production
“Azercell volunteers” brought joy to thousands of families over the past year
India to discuss IPR waiver on Covid vaccines, global trade issues during WTO DG’s 3-day
Nar continues to support the biggest Azerbaijani audiobook library
Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev and First Lady Mehriban Aliyeva visit Zangilan district (FOTO)
Number of TEU containers loaded/unloaded in western ports of Iran’s Hormozgan Province up
Iran’s Bahar Azadi gold coin price again falling
SOCAR in Georgia looking for crossover vehicles through operating lease
Iran bans local companies from entering Karabakh illegally
Gita Gopinath to leave IMF, return to Harvard University in January
India's total Covid-19 vaccinations cross 99-crore mark
Iran to re-enable issuing tourist visas
Iran reveals COVID-19 data for October 20
AccessBank to consider possibility of increasing its capital by end-2021
AccessBank projects slight increase in cost of manat resources
Georgia's knitwear exports to Turkey increase
Azerbaijan shares data on number of vaccinated citizens
Azerbaijan to reduce oil production in 2022, says IMF
Georgia’s trade turnover with Turkey increases
Azerbaijan confirms 2,303 more COVID-19 cases, 1,010 recoveries
Iran sees increase in exports to Turkmenistan
IMF expects Azerbaijan’s gas output, export to rise in 2022
Saudi energy minister sees demand from gas-to-oil switch at up to 600,000 bpd
Azerbaijan boosts production of building materials
NATO is committed to Georgia’s Euro-Atlantic aspirations - Special Representative
Kremlin says direct contacts with Taliban needed to comprehend developments in Afghanistan
Baker Hughes posts Q3 profit as drilling demand returns
Bulgaria seeks grant financing for gas storage expansion
Turkmenistan joins "Turkic.World" project
Turkmenistan, Turkish 'RÖNESANS Holding' discuss further co-op in construction sector
Iran’s PMO implementing plans on shipbuilding
Azerbaijan's oil exports to Turkey for 9M2021 revealed
Turkmenistan preparing to take part in UN Climate Change Conference
Iran allocates more bank advances to various sectors of economy
Shipping Association of Iran talks cargo transportation to China
Azerbaijan to complete construction of Khudaferin, Giz Galasi HPPs in several years
Iran looks to expand oil ties with Venezuela
300 km of overhead, cable lines laid in Azerbaijan’s liberated territories - minister
Azerbaijan plans to fully provide liberated territories with electricity by end-2021
Iran eyes increasing investment in renewable energy
All news