Three from US Consulate General Ciudad Juárez Dies in Drive-By Shooting

El Paso and JuarezImage by dherrera_96 via Flickr

Ciudad Juárez is a 0% Danger Post

CSM is reporting that National Security Council spokesperson Mike Hammer said in a statement Sunday that President Obama “is deeply saddened and outraged by the news of the brutal murders of three people associated with the United States Consulate General in Ciudad Juárez, Mexico, including a US citizen employee, her US citizen husband, and the husband of a Mexican citizen employee.”

Some forty minutes ago, AP identified the victims as a consular employee and her husband who were shot to death in their car near the Santa Fe International bridge linking Ciudad Juarez to El Paso. The AP source is the husband’s stepfather. The couple’s 1-year-old baby was reportedly found unharmed in the back seat.
You can read the AP update on this here.  Our thoughts and prayers go to the families of the victims and the consulate family in CJ.  We will not post the names here until they are officially identified by the State Department.

On a related note, we noticed that there are18 posts in Mexico but only Reynosa (which is a Consular Agency, an extension of the Consulate in Matamoros) has a 15% danger pay.  All other posts in Mexico have the following footnote under the “Danger Pay” column. I don’t understand this footnote or why it talks about Bolivia; if this is a longer footnote, the item for Mexico is not showing up:
In accordance with Section 151 of PL 101-246, danger pay is authorized for DEA employees while at the locations listed below. The authorized post differential for each location is revised by the removal of credit for political violence for those employees receiving danger pay. Bolivia 15% Danger Pay effective 3/15/95. Revised Differential for Bolivia is: Cochabamba 5% effective 3/15/95; La Paz 10% effective 11/26/95; Santa Cruz 10% effective 3/15/95; Other, Bolivia effective 3/15/95.

We’d appreciate it if somebody could help us understand what the above notation actually means.

Updated @ 12:13 am

The NYT has more here including a description of the attack and the names of the victims. “The Ciudad Juárez shootings took place within minutes of each other about 2:30 p.m. on Saturday. The victims had left a social gathering at another consulate worker’s home when they were attacked, officials said.” 
The original report mentioned a spouse of a Mexican employee of the Consulate. The NYT is reporting that the deceased is a Mexican national married to an American government employee; two children were also injured in that attack.


Six US Consulates in Mexico on Authorized Departure

Tijuana, Nogales, Ciudad Juarez, Nuevo Laredo, Monterrey and Matamoros
U.S. Department of State issued this Travel Warning for Mexico on March 14, 2010:
The Department of State has issued this Travel Warning to inform U.S. citizens traveling to and living in Mexico of concerns about the security situation in Mexico, and that it has authorized the departure of the dependents of U.S. government personnel from U.S. consulates in the Northern Mexican border cities of Tijuana, Nogales, Ciudad Juarez, Nuevo Laredo, Monterrey and Matamoros until April 12.  Family members of US Government personnel assigned to other areas of Mexico outside the Mexican border states are not affected by this departure measure. This Travel Warning supercedes that of February 22, 2010, and announces the authorized departure of some dependents and updates security incidents. 
AP is reporting that two American citizens and a spouse of a Mexican employee were killed Saturday afternoon, according to an unnamed U.S. official who “spoke only on condition of anonymity to discuss sensitive information.” The AP report also quotes State Department spokesman Fred Lash who said that the decision to authorize consular employees’ family members to leave the area was based not only on Saturday’s killings but also on a wider pattern of violence and threats in northern Mexico in recent weeks.
The full text of the March 14 Travel Warning is here.
Perhaps because it’s the weekend, none of US Embassy Mexico’s Web 2.0 presence (Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, or mission blog) has mentioned the March 14 warning or the drive-by shooting that reportedly occurred Saturday afternoon.  Only US Embassy Mexico City and the Consulate General in Monterrey have the March 14 Travel Warning up in their website as of this writing.      
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