adults, two children shot to death in Guatemala jungle
Send a link to a friend
[February 10, 2014]
By Mike McDonald
GUATEMALA CITY (Reuters) — Nine people
including a baby and a young girl were killed on Saturday in an attack
on their home in a dense jungle region in northern Guatemala known to be
a hotly contested drug-trafficking territory, officials said.
Twenty men stormed the house early on Saturday morning, shooting
dead six adults, a 5-year-old girl and a 3-month-old baby girl in a
small farming village in the department of Peten, some 230 miles
northeast of the capital city.
Another woman who was injured in the attack later died in hospital.
The shooting appears to be related to a fight between local drug
traffickers, security minister Mauricio Lopez said.
"There's a lot of conflict in this area related to drug
trafficking," he said. "We believe the men that carried out this
attack were involved in drug trafficking."
Security officials are still conducting interviews with witnesses
and they have not yet made any arrests.
Home to rich biodiversity and national treasures such as the Mayan
temples of Tikal, one of the largest pre-Colombian Maya sites, Peten
shares a porous border with Mexico used by powerful drug cartels
looking to smuggle South America cocaine to the United States.
In May 2011 members of Mexican cartel Los Zetas beheaded 27 farm
workers in Peten in a dispute with the farm's owner over trafficking
[to top of second column]
Entering his third year of a four-year term, President Otto Perez
has promised to crack down on organized criminals who control large
swaths of land in one of the world's most murderous nations on a per
Homicides in Guatemala rose slightly in 2013 from 2012, to 6,072,
calling into question Perez's ability to fight crime in the Central
American nation where half of the roughly 15 million citizens live
(Reporting by Mike McDonald;
editing by James Dalgleish, Dan Grebler
and Lisa Shumaker)
[© 2014 Thomson Reuters. All rights
Copyright 2014 Reuters. All rights reserved. This material may not be published,
broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.