Gunmen burst into a bar in the northern Mexico city of Chihuahua, killing 15 people, including two journalists, prosecuting attorneys said on Saturday.
“They have been identified as Hector Javier Salinas Aguirre and Javier Moya Munoz, who were journalists from the city of Chihuahua with many years working at radio stations,” a source from the Chihuahua State attorney’s office said.
Nine other people died violently between Friday night and early Saturday in nearby communities, where gang drug violence is common.
They included four others from the city of Chihuahua; four from Ciudad Juarez, across from El Paso, Texas, and one from the town of Madera.
Hector Salinas, who for years was a radio reporter and former press chief for the opposition Institutional Revolutionary Party, most recently worked as director of the local news site Futuro.mx, officials said.
Javier Moya, a journalist and veterinarian, was chief news officer for a local radio station and had recently worked as a press spokesman for the city of Chihuahua.
Witnesses said that in the attack on Friday night about seven heavily armed men burst into a bar called La Colorada and demanded to know the whereabouts of two or three other men.
After getting no response, they opened fire indiscriminately, police said.
The massacre follows a similar shooting on Feb. 4, when an armed group burst into another Chihuahua bar and opened fire, killing nine people. They included five members of a band and a policewoman.
Authorities have not yet established a motive for the attack on Friday.
Chihuahua, which is the name of a Mexican state and the state’s capital city, shares a long border with the US. It is considered one of Mexico’s most dangerous regions because of drug cartel violence.
Violence linked to drug trafficking has left more than 50,000 dead in Mexico since December 2006, according to statistics reported in the news media.