Mayoral Candidate Assassinated in Mexico Ahead of June Elections

Mayoral candidate in Mexico assassinated, marking the 17th such killing ahead of June elections, as drug cartels target politicians to control local governments.

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Hadeel Hashem
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Mayoral Candidate Assassinated in Mexico Ahead of June Elections

Mayoral Candidate Assassinated in Mexico Ahead of June Elections

Noé Ramos Ferretiz, a mayoral candidate in the northern Mexico border state of Tamaulipas, was assassinated while campaigning on Friday. Ramos was running for a coalition of the opposition National Action Party and Institutional Revolutionary Party, which had governed Mexico until 2000. He was seeking reelection as mayor of the city of Ciudad Mante.

Prosecutors in Tamaulipas confirmed the attack on Ramos Ferretiz but did not provide details beyond saying they are investigating. Local media reported that he had been stabbed to death. Tamaulipas has long been affected by drug cartel violence.

Why this matters: The killing of Ramos Ferretiz marks the 17th assassination of a mayoral candidate in the lead-up to the June 2 elections in Mexico. The June 2 national elections are shaping up to be the country's most violent on record, with drug cartels often targeting mayors and mayoral candidates in an effort to control local police or extort money from municipal governments.

Another mayoral candidate, Alberto García, who was running for mayor of the Oaxaca town of San José Independencia, was also found dead a day after he was reported missing. Prosecutors said García was apparently beaten to death.

The recent slayings have prompted the government to provide bodyguards for about 250 candidates, but those running for municipal positions are the last in line for security. The killing of Ramos Ferretiz was condemned by the PRI party leader, who said they "will not allow violence to decide these elections."

Violence against politicians is widespread in Mexico, with around 30 people seeking election having been murdered across the country since last June, according to research firm Laboratorio Electoral. This includes the aspiring mayor of one of Mexico's most dangerous cities, Gisela Gaytan, who was shot dead in early April while campaigning in the central city of Celaya.

Key Takeaways

  • Mayoral candidate Noé Ramos Ferretiz assassinated while campaigning in Tamaulipas, Mexico.
  • 17th mayoral candidate killed in Mexico ahead of June 2 elections, a record high.
  • Drug cartels targeting mayors and mayoral candidates to control local police, extort money.
  • Another mayoral candidate, Alberto García, found beaten to death in Oaxaca.
  • Violence against politicians widespread, with 30 killed across Mexico since last June.