.- The Archdiocese of Guadalajara wants a permanent truce from violence, as the city hosts the Pan American Games between Oct. 14 and 30.
“In thinking about the Pan American Games we long for a truce, although we ask that it be permanently prolonged in our society,” the archdiocese said in an article published in its newspaper Semanario La Fe. “We deserve a time of peace now, don’t we?”
The Pan American Games brings together over 6,000 athletes from 42 countries, including the United States. Athletes will participate in 36 different games, including the 28 events that make up the Olympics.
The Justice Department in the Mexican state of Jalisco, where the city of Guadalajara is located, reported 1,100 crimes during 2010. This number includes an average of 70 murders per month, a sevenfold increase from three years ago.
Raul Benitez, an expert on security issues in Mexico, has stated that there is no sign of an immanent security threat to the Pan American games from drug cartels.
But a report by the global intelligence company Stratfor says the concern is “understandable, considering that Guadalajara is historically a hot spot for drug cartels and recent acts of violence.”