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U.S. State Department issues new travel warning to Mexico

December 10, 2016  |  Posted by: JammedUp Staff
U.S. State Department issues new travel warning to Mexico

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The United States Department of State has issued a new travel warning for 22 states in Mexico, which are determined to have the highest threat level posed to American citizens, on the eve of the ten-year anniversary of the drug war.

A previous alert was released by the U.S. government back on April 15th warning all Americans to avoid all non-essential travel to twenty states.

However, according to Proceso, the latest update excludes only the states of Campeche, Chiapas, Guanajuato, Puebla, Hidalgo, Mexico City, Querétaro, Quintana Roo, Tabasco, Tlaxcala, Yucatán and strangely Veracruz, which has also been the scene of a raging cartel war between multiple drug trafficking organizations.

The alert issues full warnings to avoid travel to the states of Baja California, Chihuahua, State of Mexico, Sonora, Sinaloa, Coahuila and Tamaulipas where “the capacity of state and municipal law enforcement “simply does not exist.”

Additionally, the State Department has prohibited intercity travel at night for government employees in Aguascalientes.

Baja California

The alert also recommends all U.S. citizens exercise extreme caution in Baja California, specifically in the municipalities of Tijuana, Rosarito, Ensenada, Tecate and Mexicali due to an increase in the rate of cartel-related homicides from January to July 2016, in comparison with the same period last year.

In Cabo San Lucas and La Paz, the alert recommends avoiding non-essential travel due to daylight armed clashes that arise in the streets between violent organized crime groups.

Chihuahua

With respects to Chihuahua (Ciudad Juarez, Chihuahua, Ojinaga, Palomas, Nuevo Casas Grandes and Copper Canyon) the travel warning states:

“Criminal activity and violence remain a problem throughout the state of Chihuahua and its principal cities. Traveling between cities only on the main roads and only during hours of daylight. ”

Colima (includes Manzanillo)

U.S. government personnel are prohibited from intercity travel at night, and from traveling within 12 miles of the Colima- Michoacán border. U.S. citizens should defer non-essential travel to this border region, including the city of Tecoman.

Coahuila

The State Dept travel warning advises U.S. citizens to take the utmost caution over the threat of criminal activity, including murder, armed robbery, car theft, kidnapping, extortion and sexual assault, particularly along the roads between Piedras Negras and Nuevo Laredo.

In the state of Colima, all travel is forbidden less than 20 kilometers from the border between Colima and Michoacan.

Travel only by day

Durango

The alert recommends all U.S. citizens prioritize travel in Durango during daylight hours only on toll roads and urges Americans to comply with a curfew imposed by the US embassy from one o’clock to six o’clock.

The State of Mexico

Including Toluca and Teotihuacan, Americans should postpone all but essential travel to the municipalities of Coacalco, Ecatepec, Nezahualcoyotl, La Paz, Valle de Chalco, Solidaridad, Chalco, Ixtapaluca and Tlatlaya due to the high crime rates.

“Avoid traveling by any road between Huitzilac, Morelos and Santa Martha, the National Park Lagunas de Zempoala and around,” the report of the American Union states.

Guerrero

The State Department warns Americans should stay in tourist areas in the state of Guerrero and points out:

“Guerrero was the most violent state in Mexico in 2015 for the third consecutive year and vigilante groups operate independently of the government in many areas.

Armed members of these groups tend to establish road blocks and, although not considered hostile to foreigners or tourists, suspicious of outsiders and these groups should be considered volatile and unpredictable.”

Jalisco

The state of Jalisco presents complications in the areas bordering the states of Michoacan and Zacatecas due to continued instability, the travel warning notes, and in Mexico City “no advice is in effect.”

Michoacan

The State Dept. warns that citizens should defer all non-essential travel, except in the cities of Morelia, Lazaro Cardenas, and the area north of the federal toll road 15D.

For Morelos, Americans are advised to defer non-essential travel on any road between Huitzilac in the northwest corner of the state, Santa Martha, State of Mexico and its surrounding areas.

In the new travel alert for the state of Nayarit, Americans are prohibited from night time intercity travel.

Limit travel to toll roads

Nuevo Leon

The US government has banned travel outside the city of Monterrey with the exception of shipments that are delivered only during daytime hours and on toll roads but requires all carriers to return to the municipality of San Pedro Garza Garcia to meet the curfew imposed by the U.S. embassy of one o’clock to six o’clock

Oaxaca

U.S. government staff should remain inside tourist areas and are prohibited from using public transportation in the city of Oaxaca and Highway 200, except for the stretch of road leading to the airport of Huatulco and hotels in Puerto Escondido and Huatulco.

In San Luis Potosi, the alert suggests daytime trips and avoid transit between one o’clock and six o’clock.

Sinaloa

In the northwestern state of Sinaloa, the warning says: One of the most powerful criminal organizations in Mexico is in the state of Sinaloa. Violent crime rates remain high in many parts of the state.

In Mazatlan, all travel should be limited to the Golden Zone, the historic center of the city, as well as direct routes to and from these locations and the airport. Travel to Los Mochis and Topolobampo is limited to the city and port, as well as direct routes to these areas.

Sonora

The alert cites the border state of Sonora as a key region in the international drug trafficking and human trafficking trades. US citizens traveling in Sonora must limit their day trips on major roads and be careful in the corridor of Highway 15 from Nogales to Empalme.

Because of the illegal activity, US citizens should defer non-essential to “the triangular region west of Nogales, east of Sonoyta, and north of Caborca travel (including the cities of Saric, Tubutama, and Altar).

The travel warning recommends avoiding travel to “the eastern part of the state of Sonora, which borders the state of Chihuahua (all points along the border east of Highway 17, the road between Montezuma and Sahuaripa and State Highway 20 between Sahuaripa and intersection with the Federal Highway 16).”

And in the areas, “South of Hermosillo, except for the cities of Alamos, Guaymas, and Empalme, defer non-essential travel to the east of Highway 15, in the city of Ciudad Obregon and south of the city of Navojoa.”

The warning adds that Puerto Penasco should be visited using the border crossing at Lukeville, Arizona to Sonoyta, Sonora, with consideration of limiting driving to daylight hours.

Tamaulipas

The new travel warning recommends Americans should postpone all but essential travel due to violent crimes included the high rate of homicides, armed robberies, kidnapping, extortion, sexual assault, and the threat of violence between rival organized criminals groups and also federal police forces.

“The number of reported abductions in Tamaulipas is one of the highest in Mexico. The capacity of state and municipal law enforcement remains non-existent,” the alert states.

The State Dept. also warns of the threat of gun battles between rival drug trafficking organizations, which “could arise at any time of the day.

The capital city of Ciudad Victoria has remained ground zero for a brutal cartel war for control of drug trafficking routes following a split with the Los Zetas criminal organization.

Zacatecas

The alert allows United States government personnel to travel outside the city of Zacatecas during the day using toll roads only but employees must comply with the early morning curfew imposed by the U.S. Embassy.

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