Mexico’s La Familia Cartel Offers To Dissolve If Mexico Protects Its Citizens
November 11, 2010 By Staff
Today in Latin America
Top Story — A letter allegedly sent by one of Mexico’s major drug cartels, which offers to dissolve the group if the government promises to protect citizens, was dropped in the streets of some mountain towns in the western state of Michoacán, authorities said Wednesday.
The one-page letter, allegedly signed by “La Familia Michoacana” drug cartel, said that if the government protects the residents of the western state where the cartel is based, the group will cease activities. The letter was also sent to reporters and displayed on a banner above an overpass
Prosecutors in Mexico couldn’t immediately verify the letter’s authenticity, or the purported intentions of the cartel, but said that the Mexican government will not negotiate with the cartels.
“If the government accepts this pledge publicly and carries it out, the Michoacán Family will disband so that it can no longer serve as the motive for federal authorities in abusing the human rights of Michoacan residents,” the letter said, according to The Miami Herald.
The letter says that La Familia wants to protect its home and promises to disband if federal police act honestly and fight to defend the state of Michoacán.
If the letter is authentic, this would be the first time any of Mexico’s drug cartels has made such an offer to authorities. But the letter has been met with skepticism due to La Familia’s reputation for religious zeal, gruesome beheadings and its reach as far as California’s Central Valley.
In other news related in Mexico’s ongoing drug war, a new report stated that the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) does not sufficiently share intelligence information with its counterpart in Mexico and is undermining Project Gunrunner, which seeks to stem the US-Mexican cross-border arms traffic.
“We found that ATF does not systematically and consistently exchange intelligence with its Mexican and some U.S. partner agencies,” said the internal Justice Department report on Project Gunrunner, according to AFP.
Just Published at the Latin America News Dispatch
- Sex work is flourishing in the aftermath of Haiti’s earthquake. Julie Turkewitz sends us this report from Port-au-Prince.
- Juan Víctor Fajardo reports on Bolivian President Evo Morales’ struggle to balance environmentalism and the demands of an economy still driven by mineral extraction.
- Argentines came together to remember their former President Néstor Kirchner at his funeral on Monday. Joel Richards sent us this photo essay from Buenos Aires.
Headlines from the Western Hemisphere
- The first robotic exploration of a pre-Hispanic ruin in Mexico has revealed that a 2,000-year-old tunnel under a temple at the famed Teotihuacán ruins has a perfectly carved arch roof and appears stable enough to enter, archaeologists announced Wednesday.
- A disabled cruise ship that caught fire off the coast of Mexico is approaching San Diego and is expected to arrive in the U.S. city by midday on Thursday.
- A U.S.-developed video game that lets players try to kill Cuban revolutionary leader Fidel Castro sparked an angry reaction from Cuba on Wednesday, the latest charge in the long history of bitter U.S.-Cuba ties.
- The three-week-old cholera epidemic has killed more than 640 people in Haiti and is spreading quickly in the northwest coastal city of Gonaives, authorities said on Wednesday.
- A U.S. federal appeals court judge told students in Puerto Rico that the United States should consider legalizing marijuana.
- The Honduran family of a 13-year-old boy who was gunned down while on a morning jog in what police say was a random act is pleading for the public’s help finding the killer.
- A fire broke out in a prison in Ilobasco, El Salvador, on Wednesday, killing at least 16 young inmates and injuring 22.
- Costa Rica will take its border dispute with Nicaragua to the United Nations and the International Court of Justice, if a resolution is not found, Costa Rican President Laura Chinchilla said.
- Lori Berenson, a U.S. citizen who served 15 years in prison for aiding Marxist insurgents in Peru, says she no longer condones violence and worries that political forces will force her to return to prison again.
- Peruvian archaeologists have discovered six mummified dogs, all dating from the 15th century and apparently presented as religious offerings at a major pre-Columbian site just south of Lima.
- Peru’s cabinet on Wednesday approved an increase in the monthly minimum wage to 600 soles ($215.05) from the current PEN550.00.
- Bolivia and Japan signed an agreement to help the Andean nation conduct research that will lead to the industrialization of its lithium wealth, the Bolivian firm said Wednesday.
- General Electric plans to invest $500 million in Brazil, where it will focus research on oil, gas and renewable energy.
- One of the Chilean miners trapped underground for 69 days accepted Israel’s offer of an all-expenses-paid trip to the Holy Land.
- The 2011 budget began to be debated in Argentina’s lower house, where a tight vote is expected as opposition legislators dispute official inflation data.
- A British plant an animal survey in Paraguay is being challenged by a group of indigenous rights activists.
Image: Gobierno Federal @ Flickr.