Bodies continue to pile up as the fight over turf between rival gangs the Jalisco Cartel and the Sinaloa Cartel in Mexico's Zacatecas state carries on.

Alejandro Tello said the fierce fight for the control of territory had placed the state in a grave security crisis with opposing Mexican drug cartels as the protagonists, Mexico News Daily reported.

On Tuesday, June 29, two bodies were found hanging from trees in Mexico's Zacatecas state - one in Fresnillo and one in Valparaiso.

The next day, authorities located nine more bodies, all with torture marks. The two bodies were discovered in plastic bags in a street in Fresnillo, while four were found wrapped in blankets in Zacatecas city.

The other three bodies with gunshot wounds were located on a road in Morelos municipality, north of the capital. Two of these bodies in Morelos were "crucified." The bodies were impaled back to back on the same cross.

The nine murders were believed to be linked to the territorial dispute between the rival Jalisco Cartel and the Sinaloa Cartel.

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Bodies Piling Up Amid the Jalisco Cartel and Sinaloa Cartel's Turf War

Last February, the governor of the northern state sent a letter to Mexico's President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, asking for federal government support to fight organized crime groups.

The governor said that state and municipal security forces were outnumbered and outgunned by powerful Mexican drug cartels, World Akkam reported.

Both the army and the National Guard operating in Zacatecas have been unable to stop the growing violence. The state was the seventh most violent area in Mexico in the first five months of the year, with more than 600 murders reported.

On June 23, an alleged shooting between the Jalisco Cartel and Sinaloa Cartel left 18 people dead in Zacatecas state.

Zacatecas state security department spokeswoman Rocío Aguilar said the confrontation occurred in the community of San Juan Capistrano in Valparaiso municipality, Al Jazeera reported.

It happened a few days after three bodies were found hanging from a bridge in Fresnillo, and two bodies of police officers were discovered hanging from an overpass in Zacatecas city. Seven people were also massacred by gunfire in a Fresnillo home last month.

Mexico's President on Mexican Drug Cartels

Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador's strategy to curb the violence has shown to be weak in the last two weeks and overwhelmed by unstoppable Mexican drug cartels, El Pais reported.

Lopez Obrador has maintained his "hugs and not bullets" approach, distinguishing himself from former President Enrique Pena Nieto and his predecessor Felipe Calderon.

Calderon and Nieto waged a war against drug trafficking. But Lopez Obrador dubbed it a failed war during his campaign in 2018.

Security expert, Eduardo Guerrero, noted that Lopez Obrador had ordered to monitor the areas, but he avoided the conflict.

Guerrero noted that the number of territories had been left at the mercy of crime, which in the long run will generate more violence as there will be more competition.

The security expert also told Mexico News Daily that the government's non-confrontational security strategy has allowed Mexican drug cartels to operate with impunity in states like Zacatecas and Tamaulipas, where massacres recently occurred.

He said criminals take advantage of the political limbo to carry out attacks since the chance of going unpunished is very high. 

In Tamaulipas, Governor Francisco Garcia Cabeza de Vaca is not set to leave office until late 2022. However, it is still unclear if he will be completing his six-year term as federal authorities seek to charge him with organized crime and money laundering.

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