Earlier this week, both President Trump and Democratic congressional leaders addressed the nation regarding the government shutdown, border security, and the proposed border wall. The president referred to the situation at the border as a crisis. However, his opposition stated the President Trump’s claims are false or exaggerated. Recently, CNN correspondent Jim Acosta tweeted himself visiting the border near McAllen Texas remarking at how peaceful it appeared.


However, any narrative claiming there’s no violence on the U.S.-Mexico border appears to have been disproved. According to a report from Nasdaq, Mexican law enforcement officials announced this week the discovery of more than 20 bodies which seem to be the result of a violent gang-on-gang clash. The remains were found near the city of Ciudad Miguel Alemán, in the Mexican state of Tamaulipas; and at least 17 of the deceased appear significantly burned. Several of the dead were dressed in “tactical vests with military-type uniforms,” according to CNN, and investigators located ammunition near the scene that indicates military-grade weapons were used in the killing. Ciudad Miguel Alemán sits on the banks of the Rio Grande river, opposite the town of Roma, Texas. According to KXAN, McAllen, Texas is approximately two hours from where the bodies were located.

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Mexico’s President Andrés Manuel López Obrador stated an investigation is currently underway, and more details are forthcoming. Some experts believe the carnage is the result of a bloody turf war between remnants of the fractured Zetas cartel and the Gulf cartel, which have been fighting to gain possession over the region, reports CBS. This region is a hub of drug trafficking, and CNN reports the cartels also use the area to traffic “weapons and people.”  The warring cartels racked up a massive body count during their conflict, with some researchers placing the number of victims at more than 30,000.

Whether or not a physical wall can prevent the entry of drugs and weapons flowing from Mexico in the United States is still hotly debated. Some believe the barrier will drive traffickers away, while others believe those wishing to cross will find alternative means to defeat the barrier. Both parties are in agreement that security along the country’s southern border should be a priority, and this most recent example of extreme violence indicates the drug war south of the border is still ongoing.