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Mexican drug cartel claims responsibility for nightclub shooting

Xinhua | Updated: 2017-01-18 09:40

MEXICO CITY - Members of Mexico's Zetas drug cartel presumably claimed responsibility for the nightclub shooting that killed five people in the Caribbean resort of Playa del Carmen, local media reported on Tuesday.

Residents of Playa awoke early in the day to several white banners on which messages were spray painted in black, claiming the attack was in retaliation for a lack of cooperation from the organizers of an event that was targeted by gunmen in the pre-dawn hours of Monday.

On its Facebook page, the "Playa News" weekly posted a photo of a banner that read: "this is a show that we are here, it was for your failure to align (with us) Phillip BPM, this is the beginning."

The message was signed "El Fayo Z," a purported member of the Zetas cartel.

In an interview with Mexico City's Radio Formula station, the weekly's director, Ruben Pat, said eyewitness accounts indicate three or more armed men entered the Blue Parrot nightclub in Playa, and specifically addressed two people, a security guard and one of the organizers of the BPM electronic music festival.

After shooting those two men dead, the attackers began to shoot in different directions to generate panic and chaos, and flee the place, "and evidently that's what happened, because they could not be apprehended," Pat said.

The state prosecutor's office (FGE) of Quintana Roo, has identified the two men as Canadian Kirk Wilson, BPM supervisor of security at the nightclub, and Italian Daniel Pessina, a BPM staff member.

The FGE has not confirmed the motive for the attack, saying the investigation is ongoing.

The incident does not appear to have dampened tourism in Playa, according to Pat, who said, "last night everything took place very normally, there were quite a few tourists of all nationalities" out and about.

This year marked the 10th anniversary of the annual BPM festival in Playa.

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