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Samantha Felix Samantha Felix

More Than 22,000 People Are Missing Due to Mexico’s Drug War

The Mexican government more than doubles its assessment of the number of people missing as a result of drug war violence.

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The Mexican government has drastically increased its calculation of the total number of people reported missing due to drug war violence. The number has been revised up from a figure of 8,000, given just this past May, to 22,322 people.

The Mexican drug war surged in 2006 after then-President Felipe Calderon declared war on the cartels. Mariana Benitez, assistant attorney general, says 12,532 people went missing between 2006 and 2012. And an additional 9,790 people are believed to have gone missing in the past two years, since President Enrique Pena Nieto took office.

The numbers of missing people reported by Mexican authorities have varied greatly before, due in part, explains Benitez, to missing people later being located or confirmed dead. Either way, the many thousands involved are a stark reminder of how much healing the country has yet to do.