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13 dead after bar shooting in Mexico state gripped by violence

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WATCH: At least 13 people are dead and seven wounded after a shooting at a bar early Saturday morning in Guanajuato state in Mexico – Mar 9, 2019

MEXICO CITY — At least 13 people were killed and another seven wounded in a shooting at a bar early on Saturday in Mexico‘s violence-wracked Guanajuato state, local media reported.

It was not immediately clear who committed the crime. Before sunrise, a group of armed men pulled up in three vans at the La Playa Men’s Club in the city of Salamanca, burst into the premises and opened fire, local media reported.

READ MORE: Mexico pipeline explosion that killed 79 is an ‘example’ for fuel thieves, officials say

Powerful oil theft gangs have stolen vast quantities of fuel from Salamanca’s oil refinery. This week President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador launched a major offensive to capture local gang leader Jose Antonio Yepez, known as “El Marro.”

A video taken after the shooting from the street near the bar showed a line of police vehicles. A woman wailed uncontrollably in the background as an ambulance drove into the area.

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READ MORE: At least 21 dead, 71 hurt in Mexico pipeline fire caused by fuel thieves

Salamanca lies in Guanajuato state, part of the country’s industrial heartland that was a magnet for carmakers such as Volkswagen AG, General Motors Co and Toyota Motor Corp, but it suffered a doubling of murders last year, making it one of Mexico’s most violent regions, official data shows.

More than a decade after the launch of a militarized effort against drug cartels that has led to some of Mexico’s bloodiest years on record, the latest effort will test the new government’s ability to curtail the reach of organized crime.

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