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Six police officers from the municipality of Calera in the north-central Mexican state of Zacatecas were killed on Wednesday, September 28, after gunmen opened fire on them while they were exercising at a sports center.

Zacatecas Governor David Monreal condemned what he called a “cowardly attack,” and offered his condolences to the family, loved ones and colleagues of the victims.

“We will do whatever is necessary to bring justice to the victims,” Monreal wrote on his official Facebook account. “I have instructed the Mesa de Construcción de Paz to act with timeliness and efficiency to find the culprits.”

In recent years, violence has escalated in Zacatecas, due to an alleged turf war between the Sinaloa Cartel and the Jalisco New Generation Cartel (CJNG) for control of drug-smuggling routes to the United States.

In January of this year, 10 bodies were dumped in front of Monreal’s office in the Zacatecas state capital. The bodies of eight men and two women were found stuffed inside a sports utility vehicle and left in the main plaza, apparent victims of “asphyxiation by strangulation.”

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