Monday, July 1, 2013

Mexican drug war deaths fell to 18 month low in June

But 6,607 died in first seven months of Peña Nieto's watch

Guadalajara -
Mexico's Milenio news network published its tally of June drug war murders today, and reported that homicides have fallen to their lowest level in more than a year and a half.

In June there were 869 executions, occurring in 27 of Mexico's 32 jurisdictions. In November 2011 there were 756 murders. Milenio said drug war deaths fell 5.9% from the month of May.

In the period January to June, 2013 homicides fell 25% compared to 2012, according to the network.

The government will issue its own audited report within the next week. Milenio has understated drug war homicides at least three times this year, typically by 10% or less. The government admitted the actual numbers were higher on each occasion.

PRI President Enrique Peña Nieto promised when the was elected - one year ago today - to reduce violence throughout the nation. His chief cabinet officer, secretary of government Miguel Ángel Osorio Chong, regularly insists that such is occurring, although there is empirical evidence to the contrary.

Not all the news was good for the new administration. Since Peña Nieto was sworn in on Dec. 1, 6,607 people have died in drug war violence, 5,625 of them in 2013. The average is 944 per month.

States with the highest June drug war homicide numbers included Chihuahua, Guerrero (Acapulco and environs), Edomex, Jalisco and Sinaloa. Edomex, the State of Mexico, could be loosely defined as suburban Mexico City.

The capital itself had nothing to cheer about. Milenio reported that there were 18 drug war murders in Mexico City in June, which it claimed was the highest number since August 2012.

Chihuahua has been Mexico's most deadly state in 2013. More than 1,500 people have been killed there since Jan. 1, including 10 over the weekend. The remote community of Guadalupe y Calvo remains a seedbed of drug war violence. Authorities say the town is a regional hub for marijuana and opium poppy operations. In the hard, cold land of the Sierra Tarahumara, narco traffickers wage open war against the poorest.

Aug. 16 - Mexico claims drug war deaths are plummeting
June 12 - PRI mayoral candidate assassinated in Chihuahua
June 6 - Mexico records another month with less than a thousand drug war deaths
May 10 - Mexico says drug war deaths are plummeting
April 2 - Mexico's March drug war tally was 1,025 dead, with Jalisco state in fourth place nationwide

"Esta noche, sí, ganó México - Tonight, Mexico won" - Enrique Peña Nieto, July 1, 2012

© MGRR 2013. All rights reserved. This article may be cited or briefly quoted with proper attribution or a hyperlink, but not reproduced without permission.

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