Mexico travel advisory from State Department

NUEVO LAREDO, MEXICO - AUGUST 06:  People walk...
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Due to the ongoing drug violence in the area, U.S. citizens have been warned to avoid travel on Mexican Highway 2 between Reynosa and Nuevo Laredo (pictured).

According to the advisory, there is an increasing level of violence all over Monterrey as well as an increase in kidnappings in the area. The violence has spread to the neighborhood where there is a school attended by many of the U.S. consulate employees’ children and personnel have been warned to remove their children from the city.

The warning cautions that the local police departments are spread too thin and are unable to take care of the criminals in the areas around schools.

Although the state department has issued the travel advisory, officials do not plan on stopping Americans from travelling to Mexico if they choose to do so anyway. State Dept. spokeswoman, Nicole Thompson, says that they just want people to be aware and know what is going on so that they can be prepared for possibly dangerous situations.

She recommended that any U.S. citizens who live in or near the border of Mexico to go online and register so that they will receive travel warnings as they are issued. Thompson also said people should be prepared with the addresses of the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate in case of emergency.

Security has deteriorated over much of northeast Mexico since the violence began escalating in February. There are two dominant drug cartels, the Gulf Cartel and the Zetas, and these two groups have been battling for control over the drug smuggling routes throughout the region. This continues despite Mexican military troops which have been across the country since 2006.

Despite the hardline stance that President Felipe Calderon has taken against the Mexican criminal organizations, over 28,000 people have been killed in drug related violence in Mexico since 2006.

Authored by: Richard Lee

Richard has been traveling since he took a year off from college, where he was doing a BA in Journalism. He traveled half the world, backpacking with his girlfriend (now his wife). They spent time in South America, Asia, Greece and much of Europe. After writing about his experiences for several airline and travel magazines, he never went back to college.