Mexico shootout leaves 14 dead

MEXICO CITY (AFP) – A shootout in a Mexican town near the US border between suspected drug traffickers and police left at least 14 dead, including four officers, officials said.

The confrontation broke out shortly before noon in Villa Union in the northern state of Coahuila when officers detected several vehicles and heavily armed passengers touring the small community, which is roughly 60 kilometres from the United States (US) border. Four of those killed were police, seven were suspected criminals and another three unidentified bodies were found nearby on a rural road, Coahuila governor Miguel Angel Riquelme told reporters.

Six officers were also wounded but their injuries were not serious and they had already been discharged from hospital, Riquelme said.

An unspecified number of people – including a child – were also missing, government officials added. Local authorities said a total of 12 trucks were seized in the operation, as well as several high-calibre weapons and an unspecified load of ammunition.

A damaged pick up is on the streets after a gun battle between Mexican security forces and suspected cartel gunmen, in Villa Union, Mexico. PHOTO: AP