Press TV
February 3, 2009

Drug-linked violence has taken the lives of 13 people, including a police officer, in northern Mexico near the border with the US.

The office of the attorney general of Chihuahua said on Monday that two people were killed and two others were wounded by gunmen at a race track in Namiquipa.

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Six people were also killed in Ciudad Juarez and five in three other towns in the state, including a police officer in Guadalupe y Calvo.

The killings in Ciudad Juarez included two double homicides on Sunday and Monday, seen as part of the ongoing feud over territory between the Juarez and Sinaloa drug cartels, representatives of the attorney general added.

Some 2,400 people were murdered in the state of Chihuahua in 2008; Ciudad Juarez had the largest share with some 1,600 killings, according to government figures.

The Mexican government has been imposing a crackdown on organized crime since President Felipe Calderon took office in December 2006, deploying some 36,000 soldiers across the country to stop the bloodshed.

The number of drug-related crime victims topped 5,300 in 2008, according to statistics released by the government.

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