The Red Cross organization and its volunteers in Mexico are boosting its security after a group of gunmen suddenly pulled out a wounded man from an ambulance over the weekend. Police authorities in Salamanca in Guanajuato State have provided armed escorts to all Red Cross ambulances as drug cartels and rival gangs have ignored the work of medical personnel and first aid responders during the times of conflict.
The organization has halted all their services last Saturday in the violent city due to the incident as several paramedics were threatened by armed men responding on an emergency shootout. Although the situation is now back to normal, police authorities have started providing escorts to all volunteers depending on the situation.
In a statement, the Red Cross said that all volunteers from the organization are not part of any conflict and should be respected and protected at all times.
Several violent cities in Mexico have witnessed the Drug Cartel members and gangs disrespecting and disregarding the work of first aid responders and physicians in an emergency situation. What’s worst is that some even saw thugs going inside hospitals and operating rooms to rescue comrades or finish off a member of rival gangs.
The state of Guanajuato is one of the most violent areas in Mexico where criminal gangs are illegally siphoning petrol from pipelines. The government has focused its crackdown on oil theft earlier this year which resulted in the increase of violence and crime. In June 2018 alone, six traffic officers were killed in a single day in Salamanca, a place 300 km Northwest of Mexico City.
The elected president of Mexico, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador have already declared the crackdown a success, but his administration saw the increase of violence and crime rate since he took office in December last year. Despite this, the government is still doing their best to lessen the crime rate in the area.