Mexico mass grave complex reveals 88 bodies

At least 88 bodies have been found in a complex of mass graves in the Mexican state of Tamaulipas since Thursday.

Mexico City: At least 88 bodies have been found in a complex of mass graves in the Mexican state of Tamaulipas since Thursday, security officials say, likely victims of the country`s ongoing drug wars.

The last 16 bodies were uncovered Sunday in four mass graves around the community of San Fernando, some 160 kilometers (100 miles) south of the border with the United States in far northeastern Mexico.

The graves, the largest concentration ever found in one area in Mexico, were discovered with information obtained from a suspect that soldiers detained one day earlier, according to a military statement.

The Mexican army said the suspect, identified as Armando Morales Uscanga, "gave information for the uncovering of four more hidden mass graves."

Officials on Thursday and Friday said 59 bodies had been unearthed in mass graves around San Fernando. Thirteen more were discovered on Saturday.

According to Morales, several of those killed were travelers aboard two long-distance passenger buses who were kidnapped between March 24 and March 29.

Morales acknowledged "his participation in the assassination and illegal burial of 43 bodies," the military statement said.
At least 16 people have been detained in connection to the mass graves, authorities said.

In August 2010, officials in San Fernando found the remains of 72 people, mostly Central American migrants, who were slaughtered by criminals.
While authorities have not assigned blame, there is a fierce battle in northeastern Mexico over control of lucrative drug smuggling routes into the United States between the Zetas -- a ruthless cartel run by former Mexican anti-drug commandos -- and their former employers, the Gulf Cartel.

Seven major drug gangs are operating in Mexico and their bloody clashes with each other and the authorities have left over 34,600 people dead since December 2006.

The country`s Human Rights Commission said more than 5,000 people have been reported missing in Mexico, and many are presumed to be victims of the drug war.

President Felipe Calderon launched a military crackdown against the drug gangs in 2006 but has so far failed to stem the violence.


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