United States officials issued a strict travel warning to government staff based in Mexico after undetonated bombs were found on a ferry.
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"U.S. Government employees are prohibited from using all tourist ferries on this route until further notice. Mexican and U.S. law enforcement continue to investigate," the U.S. embassy release said.
Two unexploded devices were discovered Thursday on the boat which runs between Playa del Carmen and Cozumel, popular tourist destinations. Authorities say the ferry was not in operation at the time.
“I would say the effect on the tourist population is an undesired collateral effect of something that probably has some other motive,” federal Interior Secretary Alfonso Navarrete said.
Quintana Roo state prosecutor Miguel Angel Pech Cen said the boat was not in service when the device was discovered. The prosecutor added that the device was handed over to the defense department for investigations.
This is the second incident in as many weeks. On Feb. 21, a blast on a ferry on the same route resulted in 25 being people, seven of whom were identified as American nationals.
The explosion was blamed on faulty mechanics, according to port officials. Reuters said a drug gang claimed responsibility for the blast on the boat, which local media said is owned by father of former governor Roberto Borge.
Borge, a representative of Mexico’s ruling Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI), was extradited in January from Panama to face charges of embezzlement and abuse of public office.