At least 44 killed in clashes in Mexico

At least 44 killed in clashes in Mexico
At least 44 people were killed in clashes between security forces and members of a drug cartel west of Mexico on Friday.

Two members of the security forces were among those killed, while the others were members of the drug cartel Jalisco Nueva Generación (JNG).

The shootout took place at a farm in the border area between the states of Michoacan and Jalisco. According to security sources an anonymous tip was received that armed men had gathered there. When security forces arrived at the scene it ended with heavy gunfire.

Military reinforcements were summoned and the gunmen were attacked from the air. Afterwards large quantities of weapons was found at the farm.

Tanhuato is located near the town Yurecuaro, where a former vigilante leader who tried to become mayor, was shot and killed during a campaign event last week.

In 2013 farmers formed vigilante forces in Michoacan to expel the drug cartel Los Caballeros Templarios (Knights Templar).

Tanhuato is also close to the border with the state of Jalisco, where the mighty drug cartel Jalisco Nueva Generación has fought against security forces in deadly clashes earlier this year.

On May 1, the group shot down a police helicopter, with a rocket-propelled grenade, an attack that cost seven soldiers and a policewoman their lives. On the same day authorities announced Operation Jalisco, which targets the cartel.

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