Mexico

Mexico’s state institutions have been bedevilled for decades by widespread corruption and powerful transnational criminal organisations. Crime and the “war on drugs” have destabilised the country and fuelled violence; meanwhile, thousands of refugees and migrants flee through Mexico from similar volatility in Central America. Crisis Group focuses on addressing criminal violence, institutional corruption, trafficking and migration. Our aim is to help solve challenges to security posed by global criminal networks, local armed groups and the elusiveness of state rule.

CrisisWatch Mexico

Unchanged Situation

Rival criminal groups clashed, deadly attacks on journalists continued, and govt announced plans to extend military’s control over policing. Deadly violence persisted at high levels during month. In Jalisco and Guanajuato states (both centre), suspected members of Jalisco Cartel New Generation (CJNG) 9 Aug blocked roads and set fire to vehicles and shops, apparently in response to federal forces’ attempt to capture leading members of group. In Ciudad Juárez city, Chihuahua state (north), suspected members of Sinaloa Cartel’s affiliated groups Los Mexicles and Los Chapos 11 Aug clashed inside local prison, killing two. Violence same day spilled onto city streets, with members of Los Mexicles killing nine. In Baja California state (north west), presumed members of local criminal group Los Erres, which collaborates with CJNG, 12 Aug blocked roads and set fire to public transport in Tecate, Mexicali, Rosarito, Ensenada and Tijuana cities. Suspected members of La Familia Michoacana drug cartel 25 Aug clashed with local gang in Tuzantla municipality, Michoacán state (centre), killing eight. Deadly attacks on journalists continued. Unknown assailants 2 Aug shot dead journalist Ernesto Méndez in San Luis de la Paz, Guanajuato; authorities 16 Aug found body of missing journalist Juan Arjón López in San Luis Río Colorado municipality, Sonora state (north west). Human rights organisation Article-19 18 Aug said 2022 “could be the worst year in a century” for Mexico’s journalists, with 331 documented attacks between Jan and June. President López Obrador 8 Aug announced he would present legislation to formally integrate National Guard into Ministry of Defence (SEDENA), prompting criticism from civil society observers for breaking promise to keep National Guard as civilian institution. Defence Minister Gen Luis Cresencio Sandoval 10 Aug confirmed National Guard will be formally integrated into SEDENA 16 Sept. Meanwhile, authorities 25 Aug announced former Attorney General Jesús Murillo Karam will be criminally prosecuted for disappearance of 43 students from Ayotzinapa college in 2014, becoming highest-ranking official facing justice for their deaths.

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In The News

21 Apr 2022
Every group [in Mexico] I've ever talked to claims that they don't extort, kidnap or kill innocent people... These claims are, from my experience, never free of contradic... CNS

Falko Ernst

Senior Analyst, Mexico
14 Mar 2022
There is no category in international law for the violence and conflict that’s plaguing Mexico, and especially Michoacán. Vice

Falko Ernst

Senior Analyst, Mexico
4 Mar 2022
There is always an element of negotiation when you use [violence] against the state. InSight Crime

Falko Ernst

Senior Analyst, Mexico
31 Jan 2022
What makes such a wave of journalist killings [in Mexico] possible is that criminal interests … are almost never properly investigated or punished. The Guardian

Falko Ernst

Senior Analyst, Mexico
1 Jul 2021
The problem in Mexico is still being reduced by most as a turf war between cartels, while it is more of an internal violent conflict. The New Humanitarian

Falko Ernst

Senior Analyst, Mexico
8 Dec 2020
Cartels’ brand names fade away eventually. [But] all of those [other] networks stay in place. The Guardian

Falko Ernst

Senior Analyst, Mexico

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Falko Ernst

Senior Analyst, Mexico
Falko Ernst

Angélica Ospina-Escobar

Gender Fellow, Mexico
Angélica Ospina-Escobar