Thursday, June 20, 2024

Guerrero mayoral candidate killed at final campaign event

A Guerrero mayoral candidate was killed at a campaign event on Wednesday, becoming the latest political aspirant to be murdered during an electoral period marred by violence.

Alfredo Cabrera Barrientos, PRI-PAN-PRD candidate for mayor in the municipality of Coyuca de Benítez, was shot at point-blank range at his final campaign event.

The aggressor was shot dead by the National Guard, which had been deployed to protect the candidate.

Video footage showed that Cabrera, 40, was shot in the head as he was about to take the stage to make the final speech of his campaign.

The event was held in the community of Las Lomas in Coyuca de Benítez, a coastal municipality that borders Acapulco to the west.

The Guerrero Attorney General’s Office (FGE) said in a statement that it had opened an investigation “against the person or people” responsible for the murder of the candidate.

Screen capture of assassination of mayoral candidate
Videos and photos of the brazen murder quickly went viral on Thursday. (CUARTOSCURO.COM)

It noted that the “presumed aggressor” was killed. The FGE didn’t mention a possible motive for the attack, but organized crime groups are known to target politicians and candidates they see as unwilling to accommodate, or at least tolerate, their activities.

Cabrera was previously targeted in a 2023 armed attack, according to Alejandro Bravo Abarca, leader of the Institutional Revolutionary Party, or PRI, in Guerrero.

Earlier this month, a PRI-PAN-PRD candidate for councilor in Coyuca de Benítez, Aníbal Zúñiga Cortés, and her husband, Rubí Bravo Solís, were found dead. Their bodies had been dismembered.

A municipal security secretary and 12 police officers were killed in an ambush in Coyuca de Benítez last October.

Cabrera, who in video footage is seen smiling and greeting his supporters just before he was killed, became the 35th candidate or political aspirant to be murdered during the 2023-24 electoral period, according to a count by the Mexico City-based consultancy firm Integralia.

Based on the number of candidates and aspirants killed, this electoral cycle, which began last September, is the most violent in Mexican history.

Most acts of electoral violence target candidates at the municipal level, who are usually more accessible to the public and often don’t have security details.

With reports from Reforma 


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