Five Mexican police officers killed in ambush

The violent events in Oaxaca, the majority linked to organized crime, have multiplied in recent years. (AFP)
Updated 09 November 2019

Five Mexican police officers killed in ambush

  • The violent events in Oaxaca, the majority linked to organized crime, have multiplied in recent years

OAXACA, Mexico: At least five police officers were killed after they were ambushed in a small community nestled in the highlands of the state of Oaxaca in southern Mexico, local authorities reported.
The policemen were attacked late on Friday afternoon, according to the Secretary of State Security, as they patrolled La Cementera de San Vicente Coatlan, a community of about 4,000 inhabitants, roughly 80 kilometers from the state capital.
Five officers were killed and two more were injured, the ministry said in a statement. The two injured men were taken to a hospital in Oaxaca.
“I condemn the aggression against elements of the State Police in San Vicente Coatlan and I sympathize with their relatives. I have asked the prosecutor for an exhaustive investigation,” Oaxaca Governor Alejandro Murat wrote on his Twitter account.
The violent events in Oaxaca, the majority linked to organized crime, have multiplied in recent years. Last August, the mayor of San Jose Estancia Grande and a state official were killed in an armed attack.
The army was dispatched to fight drug trafficking in 2006, but experts blame the so-called “drug war” for the spiraling violence between fragmented cartels and the military, which has led to more than 250,000 murders.


Turkey tries to shed light on White Helmets founder’s death

Updated 3 min 21 sec ago

Turkey tries to shed light on White Helmets founder’s death

  • James Le Mesurier’s body was found near his home in Istanbul early Monday
  • Turkish police believe he fell to his death from his home and are investigating the circumstances

ANKARA: Turkish officials were performing an autopsy and other procedures Tuesday as they tried to understand how a former British officer who helped found the White Helmets volunteer aid group in Syria died.
James Le Mesurier’s body was found near his home in Istanbul early Monday by worshippers on their way to morning prayers. Turkish police believe he fell to his death from his home and are investigating the circumstances. Last week a top Russian official had claimed he was a spy, something Britain strongly denies.
The Istanbul chief prosecutor’s office said an autopsy and other procedures were underway at Istanbul’s Forensic Medicine Institute to determine “the exact cause” of his death. It also said police were still in the process of gathering security camera recordings near the scene and assessing them.
Earlier, Istanbul governor Ali Yerlikaya told reporters: “Our chief prosecutor’s office, our police are engaged in multifaceted efforts to shed light on the incident.”
Le Mesurier was the founder and CEO of May Day Rescue, which established and trained the White Helmets, also known as the Syria Civil Defense, a group of local humanitarian volunteers.
The group, which has had more than 3,000 volunteers in opposition-held areas, says it has saved thousands of lives since 2013 and documented Syrian government attacks on civilians and other infrastructure. The group has been nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize, but has not won.
Last week, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova accused Le Mesurier of being a former British agent working in the Balkans and the Middle East. She alleged he had “been spotted all around the world, including in the Balkans and the Middle East.”
Karen Pierce, Britain’s ambassador to the United Nations, denied those allegations Monday, saying “the Russian charges against him, that came out of Foreign Ministry that he was a spy, are categorically untrue.”
She also said Britain would be “looking very closely” at the Turkish authorities’ investigation into Le Mesurier’s death.
Turkey’s state-run Anadolu Agency reported that he was 48 and had moved to Turkey with his wife four years ago.