For the war on drugs, Mexico conquered what could a sizable battle on Wednesday by capturing one of the most-wanted drug lords, Iván Velázquez Caballero from the fractionated Zetas cartel.
Savage internal fighting between with Zeta’s leader, Miguel Angel Trevino Morales and Velázquez, known as El Talibán, has caused a rush of shootouts and massacres, mostly in the north of the country, The Guardianreports.
Velázquez is one of the most-wanted men in Mexico and considered on the most senior, second-tier leaders in the Zeta cartel.
Only one day after Velázquez had allegedly split with Zeta and gone to rival Gulf Cartel, was he arrested, Al Jazeerareports.
A reward for up to $2.34 million was offered by the Mexican government for any information concerning the arrest.
The arrest was announced on Wednesday by naval officials:
“A person who is presumed to be, and acknowledges being, Iván Velázquez Caballero was captured in the state of San Luis Potosi”
A fight between gunmen and navy personnel broke out on Wednesday in Piedras Negras, a city which borders Eagle Pass, Texas.
The shootout was confirmed by officials in the border state of Coahuila. Sergio Cisbeles, the state security spokesman said the conflict was serious but was unable to say whether there were any deaths.
On Thursday, the Navy showed off Velázquez, cuffed and in the hands of armed soilder, to the press. As per usual, a table was filled with money, seized drugs and weapons, as President Felipe Calderon’s work to crack down on cartels was praised.
Velázquez’s identity has yet to be confirmed.
There is fear that the fighting will not seize and instead a new wave of violence may go through northern Mexico.