Page last updated at 02:04 GMT, Sunday, 5 October 2008 03:04 UK

More Mexican 'gang' victims found

A police car close to the body of a murder victim in Tijuana, Mexico (04/10/2008)
Mexico has seen more than 3,000 drug-related deaths this year

The bodies of 10 more murder victims have been found by police in the Mexican city of Tijuana, where gang violence has escalated recently.

Five of the latest victims were found in an abandoned van near a shopping centre and the decapitated bodies of two others were found by a road.

State prosecutors have blamed the killings on a drugs turf war.

More than 50 people have been killed in the past week in Tijuana, a key transit point for drugs trafficked to the US.

It is not just suspected gang members who have been targeted in Mexico's recent spate of killings.

Mayor gunned down

On Saturday, the mayor of Ixtapan de la Sal, a tourist city near the Mexican capital was gunned down as he travelled in a vehicle with other officials.

BBC Americas analyst Warren Bull says the motive for the murder is still unclear, but public officials are major targets for crime gangs, especially if they are perceived to be a threat to illicit business.

Last week, the authorities found 16 bodies in 24 hours, most showing signs of having been trussed-up and tortured.

On Tuesday, President Felipe Calderon sent a series of measures to Congress aimed at fighting a wave of drug-related violence that has killed more than 3,000 people so far this year.

The package includes a proposal to set up a department to monitor and tackle corruption among Mexican police.

President Calderon launched a nationwide battle almost two years ago to reclaim territory controlled by some of the world's most powerful drug gangs.

But the cartels have responded with unprecedented violence - including kidnappings and killings that have sparked public outrage and huge street protests.

Mexican head steps up drugs fight
01 Oct 08 |  Americas
'Drug killings' hit Mexican city
30 Sep 08 |  Americas
Headless bodies found in Mexico
27 Aug 08 |  Americas
Mexican gunmen kill drug patients
15 Aug 08 |  Americas
Mexico drug-related killings soar
24 May 08 |  Americas
Country profile: Mexico
02 Sep 08 |  Country profiles

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