In Mexico, traffickers have targeted the Catholic church with extortion and deadly threats.
The 'war on drugs' has failed, some Latin American leaders say. But legalization of small amounts of marijuana, cocaine, and other narcotics may not curb violence.
New surveys find the recession has reduced Mexican immigration, but that millions still want to come to the US – and some more for safety than for jobs.
While Wednesday's stand-off may have heightened safety concerns, it revealed little in the way of lax security practices.
Authorities are investigating the motives of at least five men detained Wednesday after all passengers and crew aboard an Aeromexico plane from Cancún to Mexico City were freed.
The cabinet shakeup could signal a hardening of the government's military stand against organized crime.
Conservative President Felipe Calderón touted success in the war on drug-trafficking and launched a new 10-point reform plan in his state-of-the-nation speech Wednesday.
Jose Manuel Revuelta was gunned down in public Thursday in the state of Michoacan, while 17 others died in another apparently drug-related attack in Ciudad Juarez.
Debris could come too close or even hit the linked space shuttle Discovery and international space station if their path is not altered.