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US Embassy Issues Additional Security Alert for Playa del Carmen

09 March, 2018, 09:00 | Author: Kristen Ingram
  • Security Alert - U. S. Embassy Mexico City, Mexico (March 7, 2018) | U.S. Embassy & Consulates in Mexico

The State Department on Wednesday night issued a security alert for Playa del Carmen, a tourist draw on the Caribbean coast, saying the U.S. Embassy in Mexico City had received "credible information" about a threat to the city. The U.S. Consular Agency in Playa del Carmen will be closed until further notice.

Specific details about the threat were not released, but the embassy advised USA citizens in Playa del Carmen to be aware of their surroundings and to exercise caution.

The advisories come about two weeks after an explosion on a tourist ferry in Playa del Carmen injured 26 people, including at least five US citizens. Last summer the State Department warned people traveling to Mexico about the possibly of tainted alcohol that led to serious illness and even death in some travelers.

However, on Thursday, Mexican officials insisted that Playa del Carmen is safe despite the USA security alert.

This prohibition applies only to government officials but leisure travelers were urged to be aware of their surroundings and exercise caution while visiting the city.

Shortly afterward, the U.S. Embassy said its employees were banned from using all tourist ferries on that route until further notice.

A subsequent probe earlier this month also uncovered undetonated explosives on a different tourist ferry boat owned by the same company.

There were 25 people injured in the explosion, the director of Civil Protection for Playa del Carmen told ABC News. "Contact the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate if you need assistance".

It said the US consular agency there "will be closed until further notice".

Quintana Roo Governor Carlos Joaquín González issued a statement last night in which he played down the security risks and said local officials did not know why the US had barred its employees from visiting the town. The state of Quintana Roo also comes with a Level 2 warning. It specifically mentioned risks of traveling to certain parts due to the ongoing cartel violence and warned that USA citizens have been the victims of violent crimes including homicide, kidnapping, carjacking, and robbery.

He said he was just in the wrong place at the wrong time when the shooting occurred, and those kinds of incidents "could really happen anywhere in the world".

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