Updated with additional information from government officials and witnesses.
Warning: The following contains descriptions of fireworks and gunfire that may be graphic for some readers. Please seek medical attention if you are feeling any pain.
Cancun – Bullets pierced the sky on Friday night as drug cartels struggle to control drug-related turf wars in Mexico.
Gunfire erupted near a major resort on the Caribbean beach city of Cancun, a shootout that authorities said was “within the city limits” but that left no deaths or injuries.
On July 20, El Tres Hermanos resort in Cancun was the site of the worst drug-related violence in the area: Three people were killed, and other residents and tourists were shot at.
The Friday shootout is the fourth incident in less than three weeks in Cancun. Two armed encounters have been reported on July 20 and July 25, according to the Mexican news website El Nuevo Dia.
“The number of units sent has surpassed 100,” the public information officer for Cancun’s emergency commission, Carlos Delgado, told the Associated Press.
Delgado said authorities are working to identify the weapons and those responsible.
Police, a hotel staff member and workers for a catering company near the scene of the shooting reported hearing 10 gunshots, Delgado said.
The resort that was targeted in the shooting Friday is just across the street from the upscale El Encanto.
The Washington Post reports:
One source told the Associated Press that a man was standing in a parking lot, holding up a single, red-hot bullet that he said was fired at his hotel from one of the resort’s towers. “I heard ‘boom’ and my heart started pounding,” said the source, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he feared reprisals from drug cartels. “It was a single shot. I saw a flash, and within three seconds I heard another shot.”
The Cancun location of the shooting falls under the area known as “the triangle,” a territorial organization in which the Zetas drug cartel and the Gulf Cartel have battled. El Nuevo Dia reported that the buildings, as well as the hotel, have been set on fire in at least three other instances where confrontations between cartels have broken out.
Reports of shootings in Cancun have become a regular part of the nightly news.