Gunmen broke into a drug rehabilitation centre, lined people against a wall and shot 17 of them dead in a bloody day in Mexico's drug war.
The attackers broke down the door of El Aliviane centre in Ciudad Juarez on Wednesday, lined up their victims and opened fire, said Arturo Sandoval, a spokesman for the regional prosecutors' office. At least five other people were injured. Ciudad Juarez, across the border from El Paso, Texas, is Mexico's most violent city – at least 1,400 people have been killed this year. Most of the homicides are tied to drug gang violence. Authorities had no immediate suspects or information on the victims of the latest shooting.
Dozens of sobbing relatives rushed to the rehabilitation centre to find out if their loved ones were among the dead. Soldiers and federal agents patrolled the streets surrounding the centre in the Bellavista area. President Felipe Calderon sent thousands more troops and police to Ciudad Juarez earlier this year, but the surge has done little to stem the violence. The city is home to the Juarez drug cartel, which is battling other gangs for trafficking and dealing turf.
The brazen attack followed the killing of a senior security official in Mr Calderon's home state.
Jose Manuel Revuelta, the deputy public safety director in Michoacan, was one of four people killed when gunmen opened fire on his car.