U.S. Maintains That Mexico Is High Risk for Tourist Kidnappings
MATAMOROS, Tamaulipas — The U.S. Department of State continues to classify Mexico as a country with a high potential for kidnapping and other crimes due to the lack of security measures for travelers. This city is among the areas deemed high risk.
In the latest version of their travel warning, the U.S. Department of State revealed that “U.S. citizens have been the victims of violent crimes, including homicide, kidnapping, carjacking, and robbery in various Mexican states.”
The travel advisory notes that most of the tourist hotspots have not seen the level of drug violence like other areas and that the Mexican government has spent substantial resources to keep tourists safe. However, “gun battles between rival criminal organizations or with Mexican authorities have taken place on streets and in public places during broad daylight.”
As part of the violence in Mexico, U.S. citizens have been murdered in carjackings and highway robberies at night on isolated roads, the advisory revealed.
The State Department highlights the border states of Tamaulipas and Coahuila as areas where “violence and criminal activity, including homicide, armed robbery, carjacking, kidnapping, extortion, and sexual assault, pose significant and continuing security concerns.” In the case of Chihuahua and Sonora, cartel violence, human smuggling, and drug trafficking continue to be security concerns listed by consular officials.
Tamaulipas is singled out as one of the regions with the highest kidnapping rate. According to the Department of State, kidnappings can be:
Traditional— where the victim is taken and a ransom is paid;
Express— where the victim is taken for a short time and forced to withdraw money from an ATM before being released; and
Virtual — where the victim is coerced or forced to give the names and numbers of relatives who are then extorted by deception. That type of kidnapping usually targets hotel guests.
Editor’s Note: Breitbart Texas traveled to the Mexican States of Tamaulipas, Coahuila and Nuevo León to recruit citizen journalists willing to risk their lives and expose the cartels silencing their communities. The writers would face certain death at the hands of the various cartels that operate in those areas including the Gulf Cartel and Los Zetas if a pseudonym were not used. Breitbart Texas’ Cartel Chronicles are published in both English and in their original Spanish. This article was written by “J.A. Espinoza” from Matamoros, Tamaulipas and “A.C. Del Angel” from Reynosa, Tamaulipas.