Gunmen kill 12 people in Mexico bar attack, say it was payback by US for death of drug lord
El Paso, Tex. – Gunmen in a suspected drug cartel attack in Ciudad Juarez on Sunday killed 12 people and wounded eight others, as the assault left the country’s highest level of security out of place.
The shooting occurred after daybreak in an open area near a tourist attraction, as hundreds of tourists were enjoying the sun.
A local state congressman who heads the state’s delegation to the US Senate, told the BBC there was no official information yet on a possible motive or possible affiliation with cartels.
“Some people believe this is payback for the killing of a drug lord in Juarez, but we have no official information,” he said.
The Juarez native has previously been linked to the Sinaloa cartel in the state.
“We have no official information, but there is speculation that the crime appears to be payback for something,” he said.
The city has been gripped by violence, and Mexican authorities have been struggling to contain it.
The US State Department’s top envoy to Mexico, James F. Smith, said on Facebook that the attack was not directly tied to any specific international incident.”This was an attack by local criminal elements,” he quoted US Federal Bureau of Investigation agent Jesus Ochoa as saying.
President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said in a tweet that the “attempted attack will not succeed”.
His office said he spoke with the families of the victims in which one stated that his son was shot in the neck, another in the chest, and his mother in the leg.
The mayor of Juarez, Alfredo Castillo Hernandez, posted on Facebook that “our hearts are broken as are the families of those killed and wounded in this attack, we will do all that we can to support the people, the state and our city”.
The BBC’s Daniel Schweimler in the US says that US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo was scheduled to travel to Ciudad Juarez on Monday to meet with Mexican officials.
US senators have been meeting in Washington, DC to discuss what they say are threats posed by the drug cartels to the US and Mexico.
The US Senate will have a hearing on US President Donald Trump’s recent plan to