Hermosillo Mayor Faces Backlash After Saying Drug Traffickers Should Be Shot

By Kendal Blust
Published: Thursday, September 17, 2020 - 1:50pm
Updated: Friday, September 18, 2020 - 7:54am

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Hermosillo Mayor Célida López
Gobierno de Hermosillo
Hermosillo Mayor Célida López gave a speech on Sept. 16, 2020, calling for drug traffickers in Mexico to be shot.

The mayor of the Sonoran capital Hermosillo gave an impassioned speech Wednesday night in which she called for drug traffickers to be shot. Local groups are already pushing back against that idea.

During her annual State of the City address, Hermosillo Mayor Célida López said one of the biggest crises facing the community is young people being swept up in drug use and trafficking.

The city recently opened a drug treatment center for youth. But she says that’s not enough.

"These are traitors to the country, and we should shoot all of those that sell drugs to minors," she shouted during the speech.

López, who belongs to the same political party as the Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador, said she respects his vision for addressing organized crime. He has called for a policy of "hugs not bullets." But she said she can't sit by as drug traffickers "poison our young people."

"We should shoot drug traffickers in our country, like they do in other countries around the world," she said. "Are we going to continuing being neglectful leaders that aren't capable of confronting this situation? Or are we going to take a step forward and risk ourselves to eradicate what's happening?"

The citizens' group Sonoran Security Observatory immediately released a statement saying these kinds of “expressions of war” only demonstrate authorities’ inability to adequately combat organized crime. Instead, they called for leaders to present serious institutional solutions to growing violence and insecurity in Sonora.

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