Thursday, December 7, 2023

Gunmen arrive by water at popular Cancún beach, fire their weapons and disappear

Gunmen fired shots after arriving at a popular Cancún beach by water on Tuesday, but no fatalities or injuries were reported.

Armed men traveled to Playa Langosta in the resort city’s hotel zone on three jet skis before opening fire. Some 20 shots were fired, according to witness accounts.

The gunmen escaped by water but their jet skis were later found and seized by authorities. According to a report by news website Expansión Política, the aggressors were targeting two people on the beach.

But a witness told the Associated Press they were shooting into the air rather than at the beach.

“There were two guys and maybe even a third, who came in on jet skis, and what I saw was them shooting up into the sky,” said Rick Lebassa, a tourist from Maine. “I did not see any shots coming in toward the shoreline.”

Quintana Roo police Chief Lucio Hernández said on Twitter that police, soldiers and members of the National Guard responded promptly to reports of the shooting.

“Thanks to their quick actions, there are no injured persons and the three jet skis on which the alleged perpetrators were traveling were seized. The search for said individuals is continuing,” he wrote.

The shooting occurred just a week after a new tourism security battalion of the National Guard began operating in the Riviera Maya, a coastal region of Quintana Roo that includes Cancún, Playa del Carmen and Tulum. Members of the National Guard were patrolling Playa Langosta before the incident, according to beachgoers.

“The National Guard was here for 10 or 15 minutes. They left and 15 minutes later the shooting began,” one woman said.

A similar incident occurred early last month in Puerto Morelos, located south of Cancún. Gunmen arrived by boat on a beach in the destination, then proceeded to murder two presumed low-level drug dealers.

Among other recent incidents of violence in the Riviera Maya was an attack in a Tulum restaurant/bar in late October that claimed the lives of a German woman and an Indian woman.

With reports from El Universal, Expansión Política and AP

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