Mexican Gen. Moises Garcia Melo stands in front a poppy field that he and his soldiers worked to destroy in 2008.
A Mexican government report has been leaked, coinciding with first lady Michelle Obama’s visit to Mexico, stating that 23,000 people have died in drug-related violence in Mexico since the beginning of a government crackdown on drug gangs in late 2006.
The new figure is 7,000 more than previous official estimates. According to the report, violence has surged this year, with 3,365 people already killed in the first three months of 2010.
The fact that killings continue to rise despite government efforts to wipe out drug trafficking—such as the 2008 agreement among the U.S., Mexico and several Central American countries called the Merida Initiative—points to a failure in official attempts to deal with the issue of drugs and drug violence. —JCL
Nearly 23,000 people have been killed in drug-related violence in Mexico since the launch of a government crackdown on drug gangs at the end of 2006, according to a government report.
The report, leaked to media on Tuesday, said gang violence has continued surging this year, with 3,365 people killed between January and March.
The confidential report, sent to parliamentarians, indicated security forces have been involved in most of the gunbattles of the past three years: 977 fights have been between gangs and security forces, compared to 309 between rival gangs.
The total toll of 22,743 deaths was a rise of more than 7,000 compared with previous official estimates.