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Cancun was once hailed as one of Mexico's safest cities but it is now a hot zone of violence. Five people were found dead this week near the public prosecutor's office. These latest deaths come just days after three students were tortured and dissolved in acid in the country. The recent spur of violent activity appears to be related to drug cartels operating in the region more openly.
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Canada and US have both issued travel advisory's for Mexico and has advised citizens against planning travel to Cancun or the surrounding areas. A spokesperson for Global Affairs Canada said it "recommends that Canadian travelers exercise a high degree of caution in Mexico." The spokesperson also pointed out that "although it does not target tourists, violence related to organized crime increased throughout the country in 2017."
A Vancouver man named Diego Hernadez and an American were believed to have been kidnapped by police officers in Puerto Vallarta, another popular vacation spot in Mexico. Another couple from Canada, Nacy and Domenic Laniero, were staying with family at the Barcelo Maya Resort in Riviera Maya, the same state Cancun is in. The couple was found slashed to death on February 20, 2006, in their hotel rooms and their killer was never found.
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Cancun has been a popular vacation destination for Canadians, Americans, and Europeans and has been considered safe until last year. Canadian travel agents promote the destination as if no danger is present despite multiple killings recently. One travel agent said, "One-hundred percent, 100 percent safe. I’m going there in a month."
She didn't seem to show any concern even when informed of the 100 homicides there since January. "Well, I mean, that’s like anywhere, right? There’s always going to be something going on but there are no real travel advisories for Cancun at all," she said. "One-hundred percent OK to travel… there’s nothing wrong with traveling there."
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