By Jorge Antonio Rocha
MEXICO CITY (AA) - One Canadian tourist was killed and two others injured following an argument Friday, according to authorities in the southern state of Quintana Roo.
The shootings occurred at a hotspot for tourism in Playa del Carmen on the Caribbean Sea in southern Mexico.
Initial reports said another guest from the same hotel where the tourists are staying attacked the three Canadians.
“Regarding the deplorable events at the Xcaret hotel, the three injured were immediately transferred to the hospital, where unfortunately one dies, the three guests are of Canadian origin,” said Secretary of Public Security in the state, Lucio Hernandez Gutierrez, on Twitter.
Authorities have distributed photographs of the alleged culprit on social media. Gutierrez said officials are mobilizing and deploying a strong operation for his capture.
Violence in Quintana Roo is an ongoing problem. From 2017 to 2020, the Caribbean state has seen an increase of 80.7% in homicides, according to the Executive Secretariat of Public Security National System.
A similar problem exists for the small city of Playa del Carmen, where previous violent incidents have occurred in recent years, including the shooting at a nightclub in January 2017 that left six dead and 17 injured. Most of the victims were foreigners.
The high interest in foreign capital and domestic investment has also boosted organized crime and the demand for illicit activities, pushing the government to create a special task force for tourist safety.
The Tourist Security Battalion, derived from Mexico’s National Guard, started operating last month with 1,500 soldiers dedicated to national and international tourist safety.
The Ministry of Security and Citizen Protection reported 33,308 intentional homicides in 2021, an increase of 3.6% from the previous year.