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Car bombs explode near Mexico TV station, transit office

By the CNN Wire Staff
A burned vehicle lies in front of Televisa TV network after a car bomb explosion Friday in Ciudad Victoria, Mexico.
A burned vehicle lies in front of Televisa TV network after a car bomb explosion Friday in Ciudad Victoria, Mexico.
  • One car bomb targeted Televisa, a CNN affiliate
  • The attacks occurred in the same state where 72 bodies were discovered this week
  • No fatalities or injuries were reported in the bombings
  • Televisa was previously attacked nearly two weeks ago in Monterrey
  • Mexico
  • Tamaulipas

Mexico City, Mexico (CNN) -- At least two car bombs exploded Friday near the television studios of Televisa in Ciudad Victoria, the capital of Tamaulipas state in northeastern Mexico, authorities said.

One blast occurred outside the TV station while the second happened next to the municipal transit service offices, said the state attorney general's office.

No fatalities or injuries were reported. The nearly simultaneous blasts occurred shortly after midnight.

The explosion in front of Televisa, a CNN affiliate, damaged the building and knocked out power on the block, the station said. The station also was knocked off the air locally, Televisa said.

Images of one of the blasts show the carcass of a car, the explosion leaving only the vehicle's mangled frame but not causing much damage to nearby buildings or trees. The wreckage lies next to a wooden street pole that is slightly tilted and holds a stop sign.

The car that exploded in front of the television studio was a red Chevrolet Corsica with Texas license plates, the attorney general's office said in a news release. The car in front of the transit office was a white Mazda, also with Texas license plates, officials said.

Tamaulipas is the state where authorities discovered 72 bodies this week on a ranch believed to be used by narcotraffickers. Authorities are investigating whether the 58 men and 14 women, who were migrants from Central and South America, were killed by the Zetas cartel.

Televisa previously came under attack August 15 when a grenade damaged apartments near the TV station's office in the city of Monterrey in neighboring Nuevo Leon state. There were no reports of injuries in that attack.

A similar attack occurred the previous day, when a grenade was launched against the Televisa offices in the city of Matamoros, in Tamaulipas. The building was damaged but there were no reports of injuries.

It was not clear Friday why Televisa is being targeted.

Tamaulipas and Nuevo Leon have become a bloody battleground between the Zetas and the Gulf Cartel, which ended an alliance earlier this year. The Zetas used to be the armed branch of the Gulf Cartel but have split off into a separate drug-trafficking organization.

Journalists have come under increasing attack in Mexico, as drug cartels try to limit the information being distributed about their activities.

The Committee to Protect Journalists, an independent, nonprofit organization, criticized this month's grenade attacks against Televisa.

"No journalist is safe in Mexico when criminal groups feel free to wage grenade attacks on a national broadcaster," said Carlos Lauria, the organization's senior program coordinator for the Americas. "Drug traffickers are increasingly terrorizing the press and defining what is news and what isn't. We urge the Mexican authorities must fully investigate these incidents and bring those responsible to justice."

Eight journalists were killed in Mexico in 2009 and another eight have been killed so far this year, the Committee to Protect Journalists said this month.

In total, 54 journalists and media workers have been slain in Mexico since 1992, the group said.

Car bombings by Mexican cartels are a new phenomena. Among the first was a July 15 explosion in Ciudad Juarez that killed four people.