12:31 GMT +325 June 2019
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    Mexican Federal personnel police

    A Violent Christmas in Mexico: 6 Decapitated Heads Found, 16 Killed Over Holiday

    © AFP 2019 / JULIO CESAR AGUILAR
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    Christmas turned out to be quite gruesome in Mexico this year, with six decapitated heads discovered in western part of the country and 16 more people killed in separate incidents in Mexico during the holiday.

    The Six heads were found in Mexico's Michoacan state, according to the state prosecutor's office. The police have not been able to identify the victims or find their bodies. It is possible that the six people were murdered in connection with the rampant criminal drug activity in the region.

    Another 16 were killed in several incidents involving gun violence on December 25, according to police reports.

    Seven people were shot when a gunman broke into a house in the southern state of Guerrero, where a family and a married couple who were their guests were gathering to celebrate Christmas. Three members of the family were police officers. After a preliminary investigation, the police came to conclusion that the gunner, who was likely motivated by revenge, aimed to kill only one person, but ended up killing witnesses, too.

    Nine more people were reported killed in Chihuahua state in the north. According to reports, five of the nine, including three women, were tortured first. One man's dismembered remains were discovered in an abandoned trunk. The police link the murders with drug gang wars.

    Five years ago, Mexico's former president Felipe Calderon began using military forces to fight drug gangs, whose activity has turned Mexico into one of the most dangerous countries in the world, according to some reports. Since then, some 50,000 people have been killed. Abductions and murders are quite common in many Mexican cities, with Ciudad Juarez bearing the status of the most violent of Mexican cities, and Acapulco, Guerrero state, lagging just slightly behind.

    The US State Department issued a long-term travel warning on Mexico in April, recommending that Americans avoid or consider the risk of travel to that country. The warning puts Mexico on a list with countries like North Korea, Afghanistan, Yemen and the Democratic Republic of Congo. 

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    Christmas, Drug war, murder, violence, Mexico
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