Mexico’s Citizens’ Council for Public Safety and Criminal Justice (CCSPJP) published its 2022 ranking of the world’s 50 most violent cities Monday, designating the west-central Mexican city of Colima as the most deadly.
According to the CCSPJP, Colima reported 181.94 homicides per 100,000 residents.
The northern city of Ciudad Juarez, however, holds the all-time record for the homicide rate. In 2010 during the height of Mexico’s “war on drugs,” it reached 229 homicides per 100,000 inhabitants.
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In addition, Mexico also hosts the largest number of violent cities for the sixth year in a row. According to the ranking of the 50 analyzed cities with over 300,000 inhabitants, Mexico hosts 17, and nine of the top 10 most violent towns were also Mexican.
The report says that Colima’s rate is close to the rates that prevailed in Medellín, Colombia between the late 1980s and early 1990s due to the “war” of drug lord Pablo Escobar and his allies against the Colombian state to prevent his extradition to the US.
The civil association criticizes Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador’s current administration, which has allegedly paved the way for criminal organizations active in the country to act unchallenged.
“There is no precedent in the world of a national government — as is the case in Mexico today — that has adopted a public security policy of giving criminals a free hand to exercise violence and openly proclaiming it. On the contrary, in countries that have not followed policies that have been complacent with criminals, there has been remarkable progress,” said the CCSPJP’s report.
The report cites countries such as El Salvador, which used to hold the record for the most violent city worldwide, and Guatemala as examples of effective policy-making to curb homicide rates.
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Mexico’s steadfast violence has shown an unrelenting pace since the onset of the war on drugs during the administration of then-President Felipe Calderon from 2006 to 2012.
The “war” was a military-led strategy that resulted in the fragmentation of large cartels into several criminal gangs fighting for control in the country and the destabilization of local governments, leading to an exponential increase in homicides nationwide.
By the end of Calderon’s administration, homicide rates had experienced an unprecedented 193% increase, a trend that Lopez Obrador has been unable to counteract.