Mexico provides account of violence after ‘Chapo’ son arrestedYesterday
The operation to detain Ovidio Guzman, the son of imprisoned drug lord Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman, unleashed firefights that turned the northern metropolis of Culiacan right into a struggle zone with 30 lifeless, authorities stated Friday.
In a blow-by-blow description of the battles Thursday that killed 10 navy personnel and 19 suspected members of the Sinaloa drug cartel, Protection Secretary Luis Cresencio Sandoval stated cartel gunmen opened hearth on troops with a half-dozen .50-calibre machine weapons.
The military responded by calling in Blackhawk helicopter gunships to assault a convoy of 25 cartel automobiles, together with truck-mounted cartel gun platforms. The operating shootouts additionally killed one Culiacan policeman, and wounded 17 law enforcement officials and 35 navy personnel.
The cartel then opened hearth on the navy plane, forcing two of them down with “a big variety of impacts” in every of the 2 plane, Sandoval stated. The gang then despatched hordes of gunmen to assault fixed-wing plane, each navy and civilian, on the metropolis’s worldwide airport.
One civilian airliner was hit. The gunmen additionally shot up airport buildings in a bid to stop authorities from flying the captured cartel boss out of the town. However, Sandoval stated, authorities anticipating the resistance had loaded Ovidio Guzman onto a navy helicopter to fly him again to Mexico Metropolis.
The Mexican administration bagged the high-profile cartel determine days earlier than internet hosting U.S. President Joe Biden.
Samuel Gonzalez, who based Mexico’s particular prosecutor’s workplace for organized crime within the Nineties, stated Guzman’s seize was a “reward” forward of Biden’s go to. The Mexican authorities “is working to have a peaceful go to,” he stated.
Juan Carlos Ayala, a Culiacan resident and Sinaloa College professor who research the sociology of drug trafficking, stated Ovidio Guzman had been an apparent goal for years.
“Ovidio’s destiny had been determined. Furthermore, he was recognized as the largest trafficker of fentanyl and probably the most seen Chapos chief.”
Ayala stated the ambiance was calmer Friday, “however there are nonetheless numerous burned-out automobiles blocking the streets.”
The scope of Thursday’s violence was such that Sinaloa Gov. Ruben Rocha stated cartel gunmen confirmed up at native hospitals, attempting to abduct docs and take them away to deal with wounded fighters. Rocha stated that gunmen could be handled in the event that they confirmed up at hospitals, however that gunmen shouldn’t attempt to abduct medical personnel.
“It acquired to the purpose that at one second the docs had been saying, `We’re getting out of right here’,” recalled Rocha, saying police bolstered safety and satisfied the docs to remain.
Culiacan residents posted video on social media exhibiting convoys of gunmen in pickup vehicles and SUVs rolling down boulevards within the metropolis on Thursday. No less than one convoy included a flatbed truck with a mounted gun within the again.
Not like a failed 2019 try to arrest Ovidio Guzman – the federal government stated it needed to launch him to keep away from additional bloodshed – this time round there have been fewer civilian casualties, only one 14-year-old boy shot however anticipated to outlive.
THE GLOBE AND MAIL, SOURCE: TILEZEN;
THE GLOBE AND MAIL, SOURCE: TILEZEN;
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One distinction was that the September 2019 raid was within the metropolis of Culiacan itself round noon, whereas Thursday’s raid was round daybreak in a extra sparsely populated space to the north.
Victor Medrano, director of the Culiacan Chamber of Commerce, stated that in 2019 “every little thing occurred in broad daylight, and we had been caught on the road or at work.”
Whereas most individuals stayed of their properties Thursday, by Friday folks had been beginning to return out on the streets, Medrano stated. “There may be nonetheless some worry … however as they day goes on, there are larger variety of folks out,” he stated.
However Sergio Alvarez, head of one other native enterprise chamber, stated that in some sense the consequences of Thursday’s violence had been larger. “There have been blockades throughout the entire metropolis.”
Ismael Bojorquez, director of the crusading native newspaper Riodoce, stated the cartel seems to have solely grown stronger since 2019, when 13 folks had been killed within the failed raid.
“They (cartels) have taken benefit of those 4 years to prepare themselves, arm themselves, strengthen their constructions, their funds,” he stated. “I consider there are extra weapons than three years in the past. All of organized crime’s armies have strengthened, not simply the Chapitos, and that is the value that society is paying for this technique of the federal authorities.”
Thursday’s violence was uncommon in that it additionally focused and compelled the closure of Culiacan’s airport, the place one navy aircraft and a civilian airliner had been hit by bullets.
The business flight waited for its probability to take off as two massive navy planes landed with troops.
When the airliner was lastly making ready to speed up, passengers heard gunshots within the distance. Inside 15 seconds the sound was abruptly extra intense and far nearer, and passengers threw themselves to the ground, some stated.
They stated they didn’t know the aircraft had been hit by gunfire till a flight attendant advised them. Nobody was injured, however the aircraft swiftly retreated to the terminal.
Guzman was indicted by america on drug trafficking fees in 2018. In line with each governments, he had assumed a rising position amongst his brothers in carrying on their father’s enterprise, together with long- time cartel boss Ismael “El Mayo” Zambada.
Overseas Affairs Secretary Marcelo Ebrard confirmed that the federal government had acquired a request in 2019 from america for Guzman’s arrest for functions of extradition. He stated that request must be up to date and processed, however he added that first an open case in Mexico awaits Guzman.