Spring breakers at risk from bloodthirsty cartel as violence erupts in resort
Holidaymakers heading to Mexico for Spring Break have been issued a stark warning following a sharp spike in cartel violence throughout the country.
Mexico typically sees an increase in the number of visitors as the debauched US holiday approaches and temperatures rise.
But tourists have been urged to postpone travel, or avoid it altogether, after several kidnappings, and “vicious bloodbaths”.
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Texas Department of Public Safety director Steven McCraw warned the crime wave poses a “significant safety threat” to tourists.
He said: “Drug cartel violence and other criminal activity represent a significant safety threat to anyone who crosses into Mexico right now."
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Popular destinations for tourists include Cancun, Riviera Maya and Mexico City – all of which are rated as level two by the US State Department.
This means that visitors should "exercise increased caution" while in the area.
Travellers to the Yucatan Peninsula, which has Playa del Carmen as a destination, are also advised to exercise caution after gang murders.
Acapulco, a popular beach resort town, is ranked as one of the most dangerous cities in the world.
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Despite the warning, tourists continue to travel to the country. Earlier this month a group of four Americans were ambushed by gangs.
Two were murdered and another two were taken as hostages.
But a cartel gunman claimed in a letter that those who had killed the Americans had believed they were members of the Scorpions gang.
Another three women, who travelled to Mexico to sell clothing, are still missing.
Sisters Maritza Trinidad Perez Rios and Marina Perez Rios have disappeared along with their friend Dora Alicia Cervantes Saenz.
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Last year, 54-year-old British father Chris Cleaves was executed in front of his 14-year-old daughter while vacationing in Mexico.
Earlier this year, Mexico’s government deployed military forces including armoured cars and heavily armed teams onto the streets to battle cartel members.
The UK government issued a statement regarding visits to tourist areas: "There is currently an increased police presence in the Cancun area, including in the hotel zone.
"While tourists have not been the target, anyone in the vicinity of an incident could be affected. British travellers have been physically and sexually assaulted."
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