Mexican citizen militias called auto-defensas are waging a bloody war against powerful drug cartels. The citizen militias are organizing to combat drug cartels and restore law and order in their communities.
Autodefensas (self-defenders) or Policia Comunitaria (Community Police) or “Policia Popular” (People’s Police) are vigilante self-defense groups that arose in the Gulf of Mexico and South Mexico regions between 2012 and 2013. Mexico has attempted to monitor and absorb these groups into the federal government to act as Rural Police in order to avoid clashes between the paramilitaries and the military itself.
Self-Defense Groups in Michoacán took control of several towns to displace criminal groups such as the Caballeros Templarios, who charged a flat fee of citizens and businesses. In each of the clashes the Autodefensas have used high caliber weapons, which have led to different conflicts with the Mexican army.
Watch the dramatic documentary about this growing movement.
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