Mexican city closes 2,000 streets

March 3rd, 2011 - 11:39 am ICT by IANS  

Ciudad Juarez, March 3 (IANS/EFE) More than 2,000 streets have been closed in Mexico’s Ciudad Juarez city, on the border with US’ Texas state, to keep out gangs, an official said.

A total of 2,011 streets have been closed in the city, located across the Rio Grande river from El Paso, Texas, said Fabiola Lara Gomez, director of the city’s urban planning department.

Resident associations have closed off streets, erecting gates and posting security guards.

Some people, however, blocked access to their neighbourhoods with large stones and trash bins and took turns guarding their own areas.

Ciudad Juarez, with 1.5 million people, has been plagued by drug-related violence for years.

The murder rate took off in 2007, when 310 people were killed. It tripled to 1,607 in 2008, according to the Chihuahua state attorney general’s office, with the number of killings climbing to 2,754 in 2009.

More than 3,100 people were murdered last year. The killing has not slowed in 2011, with over 400 people murdered till date.

–IANS/EFE
pm/rd

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