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A prison clash between two rival Mexican cartels has caught the public in a crossfire, leaving 11 people dead.
The confrontation between members of the two opponent cartels was taken to the streets of the bordering city of Ciudad Juárez, Mexico, on Thursday when alleged gang members killed bystanders amid their fight.
Members of Los Chapos, the well-known Sinaloa cartel previously headed up by Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán, came to blows with the local group in the area, Los Mexicles, in the Juárez prison, according to the deputy security minister, Ricardo Mejía.
A riot was then sparked nearby, causing two bystanders to be shot to death and four to be injured by bullet wounds, Mejía reported as he spoke alongside the Mexican president Andrés Manuel López Obrador at a news conference.
Following the riot, members of the Mexicles raised an uproar in the city, according to officials, killing a further nine civilians.
Four of those killed were employees of a local radio station, including one announcer, according to Mejía.
A further 16 people were left injured as a result of the rioting. Authorities did not confirm what was the cause of the clash.
The president said: “They attacked the civilian, innocent population like a sort of revenge. It wasn’t just the clash between two groups, but it got to the point in which they began to shoot civilians, innocent people.
"That is the most unfortunate thing in this affair.”
Mejía said that four employees from MegaRadio who were working on a live promotional event outside a business were killed in the shooting.
Elsewhere in the town, local shops were also shot at and set ablaze. FEMSA, a Mexican beverage company, said in a statement that one of its employees and a prospective staff member were also killed amid the violence.
Roberto Fierro Duarte, the state attorney general for the city of Chihuahua said that a boy who was injured in a shooting at a local store died after being hospitalised, while two women were killed in a fire at a petrol station store, and two men were shot in the city.
Fierro Duarte stated that 10 suspects had been arrested. In the early hours of Friday morning, six alleged members of Mexicles were detained by local police in the area with support from the army and the national guard, according to Mejía.
The riots come just days after armed drug cartel members burned vehicles and businesses in the Mexican states of Jalisco and Guanajuato as part of a response towards the arrest of a high-ranking leader of a cartel.
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