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At least 14 shot dead in western Mexico

By the CNN Wire Staff
updated 10:43 PM EDT, Fri October 28, 2011
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • The dead include 10 people killed in a shootout with soldiers
  • The bodies of three men are found in a vehicle riddled by bullets
  • One person was killed and an officer wounded in another shootout
  • The violence was in the western state of Michoacan, a hotbed of drug-related activity

Mexico City (CNN) -- At least 14 people were killed in the western Mexican state of Michoacan -- including 10 slain during a shootout with soldiers, authorities said Friday.

The shootout took place in Patzcuaro.

"We are aware of 10 deaths," said Gen. Manuel Garcia Ruiz, public security secretary in Michoacan.

In a separate shootout in La Piedad, another person was killed while an officer was wounded, he said.

Finally, authorities confirmed three men had died in the community of Santo Domingo. Their bodies were found Friday morning in a vehicle riddled by bullets, according to police.

It was not immediately clear what, or who, was behind the violence, though Michoacan has long been a hotbed of drug-related activity.

Various cartels, including the Knights Templar, La Familia Michoacana and Los Zetas, are known to operate in the area.

Nearly 43,000 people have been killed in drug-related violence since President Felipe Calderon took office in December 2006, according to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration.

CNNMexico.com contributed to this report.

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