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Border Officials Say Tourists Should Not Avoid Tijuana Because of New Travel Alert


U.S. and Mexican officials at the border in Tijuana say a recent travel alert for Mexico should not deter tourists from visiting Tijuana. About 12 million Americans visit Mexico annually. KPBS reporter Amy Isackson has the story.

The U.S. State Department’s new travel alert on Mexico urges people to use caution when visiting the border region. They’re warning tourists about a recent spate of violence related to drug trafficking.

The alert also states that dozens of U.S. citizens were kidnapped and/or murdered in Tijuana in 2007.

The spokesman for the U.S. Consulate in Tijuana, Charlie Smith says 15 U.S. citizens were murdered in Baja last year and 22 were kidnapped. But he says tourists are not the targets.

Smith : The fact is that most of the kidnap victims that have been here reside here. But, they’re still American, so we report them. But we still know of no one who has been targeted because of their U.S. citizenship at all.

Mexican officials say all the Americans who were murdered held dual Mexican and American citizenship.

They say just one U.S. citizen was kidnapped and he was involved in drug trafficking.

Amy Isackson, KPBS News.

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