The war on tourism waged by terrorists and criminals was in evidence in far-flung parts of the world yesterday.
Police in Mexico hunted for a rampaging gunman who opened fire on partygoers on Monday, while police in Turkey arrested the suspected shooter in another mass slaying at a nightclub a couple of weeks ago.
Australia’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) issued an advisory update yesterday morning over the Mexican incident: “On 16 January 2017, there was a shooting at the Blue Parrot nightclub in Playa Del Carmen in Quintana Roo state.
“According to local authorities, foreign nationals were among the dead and injured. Investigations are continuing. Australians in the affected area should follow the instructions of local authorities. The overall level of advice for Mexico remains unchanged. We continue to advise Australians to exercise a high degree of caution in Mexico.”
Terrified Australian tourists in Mexico described how the gunman went on his shooting spree during the BPM electronic music festival, killing at least five people and wounding 15.
Foreigners were among those killed, though there were no reports of Australians harmed.
Mexican police are still seeking suspects and a motive. Such crimes in Mexico are generally related to criminal syndicates and/or drug cartels, rather than to terrorism.
The shooting will hurt Mexico’s tourism industry, which was picking up, helped by a weak exchange rate after the peso tanked following the election of Donald Trump, who has pledged to build a wall along the Mexico/US border.
Meanwhile, Turkish police reported they had arrested the country’s most wanted fugitive, the man believed to have killed 39 people and wounded many others in an Istanbul nightclub in a mass shooting attack on New Year’s Day.
The man reportedly dressed as Father Christmas at one point during the attack.
Turkish media reported the suspect under arrest as Abdulkadir Masharipov, who had operated under the cover name Ebu Muhammed Horasani.
Four other suspects were also detained. Turks and tourists from Canada, India and several Arab nations were among those killed in the attack.
Written by Peter Needham