Increasing violence in Honduras has prompted the State Department to issue a warning for that country, which has what the U.S. government says is the most violent city in the world.
In its Nov. 21 warning, the State Department said San Pedro Sula, an industrial center in northwestern Honduras, last year had 159 murders for every 100,000 residents.
An article last month by the Associated Press said Honduras was “considered the world's most dangerous country, with 91 homicides per 100,000 people, according to the United Nations and the Organization of American States, 20 times the rate in the United States.”
Part of the blame for the increased violence is attributed to Honduras’ new importance to the drug trade. Mexico has cracked down on the drug cartels, forcing them to find new bases of operations. Colombian cartels also operate in the country, Reuters reported Saturday.
The Associated Press reported in June that 84% of cocaine on its way to the United States crosses through Central America. “Air and sea shipments of cocaine to Honduras have risen dramatically since 2006, when less than 10 percent of the U.S.- bound cocaine went through the country,” the article by Katherine Corcoran and Alberto Arce said. “By 2011 the portion had jumped to more than 30%. Honduras has been the main landing point for such drug flights from South America since 2009.”