- Title: MEXICO: Eight killed in grenade attack on Mexico's national day
- Date: 17th September 2008
- Summary: (LATIN) MORELIA, MICHOACÃN, MEXICO (SEPTEMBER 16, 2007) (REUTERS) VARIOUS OF MICHOACÃN GOVERNOR LEONEL GODOY VISITING INJURED PEOPLE IN THE HOSPITAL (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) MICHOACÃN GOVERNOR, LEONEL GODOY, SAYING: "We all are working to find and punish those responsible for this attack which undoubtedly can be called an act of terrorism." GODOY TALKING WITH WOUNDED PEOPLE
- Embargoed: 2nd October 2008 13:00
- Location: Mexico
- Country: Mexico
- Reuters ID: LVABUACBTFOB2II7CDLMRWDI85F
- Story Text: President Felipe Calderon condemns deadly independence day blast in Morelia, a major escalation of a war between the government and cartels.
MichoacÃ¡n state governor, Leonel Godoy, on Tuesday (September 16) visited the wounded following a deadly grenade attack during Independence Day celebrations in Morelia.
At least eight were killed and 100 wounded in a major escalation of a war between the government and cartels.
Godoy vowed to track down those responsible.
"We all are working to find and punish those responsible for this attack which undoubtedly can be called an act of terrorism," said Godoy.
The explosions ripped through a square in the Spanish colonial city of Morelia late on Monday, at the height of a boisterous fiesta led by the Michoacan state governor to mark Mexico's national day.
Dozens of wounded people, including women and children, were sprawled in pools of blood. Revelers wandered dazed beside the cathedral in the city, hometown of President Felipe Calderon.
Godoy said police suspected the attack was the work of "organized crime" -- a term often used to refer to Mexico's drug cartels. The cartels have killed 2,700 people this year as they hit back at an army crackdown and fight one another.
The traffickers often torture and behead rivals and clash with the security forces, but had not launched an attack with high civilian casualties before.
President Felipe Calderon, a strong-willed conservative, has thrown thousands of troops and federal police into the fight against drug traffickers but killings have increased.
Calderon on Tuesday described the acts as "abominable" and vowed to hunt down the perpetrators as he watched a military parade marking Independence Day.
Mexicans gather in town squares across the country on the night of Sept. 15 to celebrate Roman Catholic priest Miguel Hidalgo's 1810 call for independence when he launched a revolt against Spanish rule by ringing a church bell and shouting "Viva Mexico" to a cheering crowd.
Mexico is the principal trafficking route for Colombian cocaine to U.S. streets. Mexicans have grown hardened to years of drug violence, but the recent spurt in cartel murders and fatal kidnappings has shocked the nation and triggered protests.
The drug violence exploded about four years ago when Mexico's most-wanted man and drug gang leader, Joaquin "Shorty" Guzman, took on the Gulf cartel in northeastern Mexico for control of the drug trade.
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