Colima has sunk into crime and violence

Mexico lacks security forces that can eradicate organized crime 

Colima has sunk into crime and violence
The bloody CJNG was launched countless attacks against federal and state forces - Photo: Charbell Lucio/EL UNIVERSAL
English 21/06/2020 10:45 Mexico City Editorial Actualizada 10:54

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Until a few years go, Colima was a peaceful state with low violence rates. Now, it is besieged by violence, which has especially affected government officials, politicians, police officers, and soldiers. The situation has resulted in higher crime and violence rates in Colima, where the federal government is constantly questioned over the decision to deploy the army to carry out public security tasks while the National Guard consolidates. 

Last week, federal judge Uriel Villegas and his wife were murdered in the state. Weeks ago, the body of local lawmaker Anel Bueno was found in a mass grave. These two cases show criminals do not respect high-ranking officials and are not afraid of attacking government officials, especially if they feel like these officials hinder their illegal operations.

In the last five years, at least 10 government officials were murdered; two more were attacked, including former Colima governor Fernando Moreno Peña, and 27 security officers were murdered or were killed during shootings. Moreover, government officials have also been harassed and threatened. It is plausible that the wave of violence was sparked by the Jalisco Nueva Generación Cartel, which has settled in the state and whose actions have generated fear, impunity, and hesitation on behalf of the local authorities. 

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The situation in Colima shows, once again, that 15 years after Mexico launched a war against drug cartels, the majority of the states still lack security forced able to face organized crime. Even after the increase in budgets and reforms to improve its operation, state governments argue that insecurity is a federal issue and hope for the federal government to solve the problem. 

This dilemma is a serious issue in several states, as they need to allocate more resources to state security bodies and to turn to constant training, especially in municipal police, the weaker institution yet the one who often faces organized crime face to face. 

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