Americans might want to reconsider their travel plans to Mexico's Baja California peninsula after the U.S. Embassy issued a startling new travel warning about cartel clashes with government security forces and elevated risk of kidnappings and possibly even death.
The U.S. Embassy in Mexico City issued the notice on July 4, warning Americans about traveling to Tijuana and Rosarito, Baja California, following the arrest "of a prominent cartel leader" and the rising probabilities "for confrontations between criminal organizations and Mexican security forces."
"U.S. citizens should expect to encounter increased Mexican law enforcement presence in those areas. Criminal organization assassinations and territorial disputes can result in bystanders being injured or killed," the travel advisory stated.
The Department of State's Travel Advisory for Baja California has been raised to Level 3, indicating that U.S. tourists are at risk of being injured, killed, or even kidnapped.
The good news for those visiting Cabo San Lucas, San Jose del Cabo, and La Paz, located on the southern tip of Mexico's Baja California peninsula, is that there are no travel warnings, even for U.S. government employees. However, the Department of State does say, "exercise increased caution due to crime."
Meanwhile, other popular tourist regions, including Cancun, Playa del Carmen, and Tulum, have become chaotic as violent crime on beaches and even inside resort compounds (read: Shooting Erupts At Popular Mexican Beach Resort Again As Cartel Turf-War Escalates) has exploded.