Last Updated: Thursday, 26 May 2016, 08:56 GMT

Mexico: Drug cartel burns down town, more than 150 people displaced

Publisher Norwegian Refugee Council/Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre (NRC/IDMC)
Publication Date 25 February 2011
Cite as Norwegian Refugee Council/Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre (NRC/IDMC), Mexico: Drug cartel burns down town, more than 150 people displaced, 25 February 2011, available at: [accessed 27 May 2016]
DisclaimerThis is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.

After being attacked and displaced by drug cartels, members of the Tepehuan indigenous community in the State of Durango continue to fear for their safety. In one attack at the end of December, a drug cartel attacked the rural town of Tierras Coloradas, only 190 kilometres from Mexico City, burning down homes and schools and displacing more than 150 people. The victims reportedly fled to the bush until the army arrived nearly a week later. No information has been available on their subsequent situation. A leader of the community, which comprises up to 20,000 members, has declared that the group is considering moving north to Nayarit.

Forced displacement continues to be overlooked as the violence grows in intensity and location. It is currently only addressed by municipalities with few resources to provide adequate protection. Following the attack, the mayor of Tierras Coloradas travelled to Mexico City but was not granted a meeting with central government officials. The government has been under greater pressure to address abuses against migrants from other Central and South American countries than those against displaced Mexican nationals: the national human rights commission reported that drug cartels, in six months of 2010, kidnapped 11,000 people crossing Mexico to migrate to the United States.

See also: IDMC Mexico country page

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