Reporting on the Mexican Cartel Drug War

Travel Warnings Issued for Mexico as Holidays Begin

Thursday, December 23, 2010 |

By Diane Smith
The Fort Worth Star-Telegram

Fernando Hernandez heard the travel warnings before he booked a bus trip to central Mexico, but he shrugged off reports of crime and kidnappings because he wants to spend the holidays among cherished friends and familiar traditions.

"We have to see the family," Hernandez said before boarding a bus Tuesday at a small station in south Fort Worth. He was traveling with his wife to the Mexican state of Queretaro some 18 hours south of the Metroplex.

U.S. and Texas officials have issued several warnings about travel to Mexico this year. The latest round -- sent last week by the Texas Department of Public Safety -- was aimed largely at the thousands of families that embark on yearly pilgrimages to cities and towns where they celebrate Christmas, New Year's Day and Dia de Reyes (Epiphany).

"We are certainly very concerned," said Tela Mange, a DPS spokeswoman. "Christmas is a time when a lot of people travel to Mexico." DPS cited several concerns, including drug-cartel-related violence along the northern Mexican border and in cities such as Monterrey and Acapulco.

Drug-related and other crimes have been documented in popular tourist spots such as Cancun and Mazatlan, officials said. Kidnappings of tourists, assaults along Mexican highways and rapes at resort areas have also been reported.

"If they choose to travel to Mexico, they need to be very, very careful," Mange said, adding: "We just wanted to make sure people understood that it's dangerous."

In Dallas, Mexican General Consul Juan Carlos Cué-Vega said it is still safe to travel in Mexico, but he also stressed caution. He said anyone traveling on Mexican roads needs to take precautions and use common sense.

For example, he said people should avoid driving at night and use the main thoroughfares. He advised travelers to caravan.

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3 Borderland Beat Comments:

Anonymous said...

Bizarre reporting.... Starts off this man is taking a bus with his wife then goes off on another subject...Doesn't mean anything and why even talk about him???

Anonymous said...

"Kidnappings of tourists, assaults along Mexican highways and rapes at resort areas have also been reported."

Where is the documentation for this claim? In particular, AMERICAN OR CANADIAN tourists?

As usual, assertions are made with no facts. There have been no major changes in US Consulate policy or recommendations for the holiday season.

Anonymous said...

If the USA is so concerned about citizens why did they leave the border open on the American side so people could go in to Mexico during the big shoot out that went on for hours in Matamoros??? They closed the border coming in to the USA so nobody could escape...Harm. But left it wide open so people who didn't know could go in..... It's all BS..

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