The more than three years of drug-related violence sweeping parts of Mexico have been far deadlier than previously estimated, says a Mexican government report quoted by the Houston Chronicle. At least 22,700 people have been killed since President Felipe Calderon took office and deployed troops and Mexican federal police against drug gangs along the U.S. border and n a number of interior cities and states.
Estimates until now, compiled by Mexican media and based on crime reports from individual states, had put the death toll at around 18,000. Gangland violence killed more than 9,600 people nationwide in 2009 and at least 3,300 so far this year, the report said. Ciudad Juarez, bordering El Paso, has by far been the most violent area for drug violence, with more than 4,300 killed in the city of fewer than 1.5 million in two years.