Three Mexican mayors slain in last 10 days


From teleSUR English, mayors fighting for their constituents are being murdered in record numbers:

Three mayors have been killed in Mexico in the span of just 10 days amid a broader wave of fatal violence across a number of states, but President Enrique Peña Nieto’s response isn’t what many would expect: he’s going on vacation starting Wednesday.

The latest victim in the slew of high-profile assassinations was the mayor of the town of Huehuetlan El Grande in the south-central state of Puebla. Jose Santa Maria Zavala was ambushed and murdered Monday night on his way home, after having been tortured and robbed in his house last year, local media reported.

The assassination follows two other similar cases in the past 10 days. First, Domingo Lopez Gonzales, mayor of the town of San Juan Chamula in the southern state of Chiapas, was killed in a massacre of more than 20 victims on July 23 when violence erupted in the community’s central square.

Then, Ambrosio Soto Duarte, mayor in Pungarabato in the violence-plagued state of Guerrero, was shot dead later the same day while traveling on a highway in the neighboring state of Michoacan, an area known to be hot spot for the drug trade. Soto Duarte had tweeted earlier in the month that he was facing threats from gangs and was concerned about his security.

The three cases bring the total number of mayors assassinated so far this year to five. The first victim was Gisela Mota Ocampa, who was shot dead in her home on Jan. 2 just days after assuming her post as the mayor of Temixco in the state of Morelos. The second was Juan Antonio Mayen Saucedo, mayor of the town of Jilotzingo in the central state of Mexico, who was killed in a gun attack while driving on a highway on April 22.

According to official statistics, 48 sitting mayors and 32 former mayors have been killed across Mexico since 2006.

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