Luis García y Francisco Zúñiga Esquivel
México • Redacción
The Governor of Nuevo León, Rodrigo Medina de la Cruz, and Monterrey’s private enterprise sector represented by Coparmex Nuevo Leon (Nuevo Leon Employer’s Association) have officially requested more Army troops and federal police to control the wave of violence that is overwhelming the Monterrey metropolitan area, whose latest atrocity is the assassination of the mayor of Santiago, Edelmiro Cavazos Leal.
In a brief message to the media in which he took no questions, the Governor announced “We are asking for a significant increase in the number of active soldiers and federal police in the state to curb organized crime.”
The Governor’s message was given immediately after he returned from the scene where Cavazos Leal’s body was found yesterday on the side of the road leading to La Cola de Caballo.
Hours later, during the press conference with the Secretary of Gobernacion (Interior Ministry) Francisco Blake Mora, Medina de la Cruz endorsed the request for the government to send more soldiers and federal police agents.
Dressed in black, the Governor said those responsible will be captured. "The death of Edelmiro reaffirms our individual and collective determination, and as governor, and I want to be clear, as governor I will spare no effort to find and punish the guilty.”
"I express my deep outrage at the murderous cruelty of the criminals, who ruthlessly ended the life of Edelmiro Cavazos Leal, Mayor, model citizen and family man," he said.
The president said the murder is part of the war between criminal groups in Nuevo Leon and will be investigated and solved regardless of their power.
"The state government fully assumes its responsibility in security issues. I stress: we assume fully our responsibility in these areas regardless of any jurisdictional questions.”
Employers speak out.
Separately the business sector in Nuevo León demanded a greater military presence in the state to deal with crime because until now, according to a spokesman, the state government has shown progress in this fight.
Marcelo Canales, president of Coparmex Nuevo León, called for a thorough investigation of the murder of the mayor of Santiago and urged the authorities to take concrete measures to curb organized crime.
"We need, now, specific actions against insecurity. Without security everything else is useless,” said the business leader.
"Those responsible for having arrived in this situation are the ones who asked for our vote and got it. They need to throw in the towel if they can’t perform," Canales said.
The business sector in Monterrey insisted on an increased military presence in the state, due to the extortions, kidnappings and security problems that plague society and have not been resolved.
Coparmex and other business organizations published an ad in major newspapers in Monterrey, urging the authorities to get to work and solve this situation and asked to have more Army units in the state to fight organized crime.
The National Action Party (PAN), indignant.
The PAN in Nuevo Leon demanded that the PGR (federal Attorney General’s Office) investigate the murder of the Pan mayor of Santiago and asked the federal government to save Nuevo León of the insecurity that the PRI governor Rodrigo Medina has been unable or unwilling to solve.
In a statement read by the state PAN leader, Sandra Pámanes, the party condemned the assassination of the mayor, which she described as treacherous and cowardly.
"Murder, blockades, kidnappings, shootings and all kinds of violent demonstrations have become part of the landscape in our state," said Pámanes.
"We repeat loud and clear: Rodrigo Medina could not and did not want to solve the problem of insecurity, so the federal government must assume a more active role.”
"This statement is a call for help for the federal government to intervene more directly and save us from the catastrophe which our superficial and inefficient government is leading us to.”
Blake Announces patrols with soldiers in Monterrey
Agustín Martínez y Mauricio Pérez
The interior minister, Francisco Blake announced in Monterrey the implementation of a new strategy against organized crime, including police patrols with military support in neighborhoods and suburbs with high crime rates and the improvement of citizen participation by securing the system of citizen complaints and anonymous tips.
The interior minister arrived yesterday in Nuevo León by order of President Felipe Calderon, after the assassination of the mayor of Santiago, Edelmiro Leal Cavazos. During his visit, the official sent his condolences to the family of the deceased..
Blake said the plan calls for a deployment based on joint Army and federal, state and municipal police patrols.
The interior minister also pledged a frontal assault on the structures of criminal gangs and a comprehensive plan to improve cities and municipalities with a high incidence of crime and violence.
Blake vowed to improve the programs for public reporting of crimes. According to Sedena, who maintains a national anonymous hotline for reporting organized criminal activities, although participation in the state of Nuevo Leon is high, calls from within the city of Monterrey are virtually nonexistent.
Also listed as part of the plan to improve security in Nuevo Leon is an initiative to move against money transfers used to finance organized criminal gangs.
Along with Governor Rodrigo Medina, the Interior Minister led a meeting at which it was agreed to create a Coordination Group that would integrate a common front against organized crime.
The event, held at the Government Palace, was attended by commanders of the Fourth Region and Seventh Military Zone, and the mayor of Monterrey, Fernando Larrazabal Breton.
Blake insisted that the state government of Nuevo Leon would not be left alone and he warned that the authorities will spare no resources or power to find those who perpetrated the the assassination of the mayor of Santiago, but declined to give progress on the investigation, arguing that the state government will announce the details of the case.
The Governor confirmed that the investigation will be carried out by state prosecutors, although in a few hours federal personnel arrive to assist in the case..