On June 11, Mexican officials found 20 people shot dead in Ciudad Madero in Tamaulipas state, and criminals killed 19 people on June 9 in an execution-style attack at a drug rehabilitation center in the northern state of Chihuahua.
Still, most of Mexico’s violence is concentrated in border regions such as Ciudad Juarez and Tamaulipas state, which also borders Texas, Payan said. As many as 90 percent of the victims are “closely tied” to the illegal drug trade, he added.
“Public perception is principally focused on the body count -- that people are being killed right and left,” Payan said. “Most of the violence continues to be tied to the drug business.”