[Ed. – Note that these four countries aren’t even the “Northern Triangle” of El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras, where MS-13 is such a problem. A decade ago, all four were much more stable, with better governance and brighter prospects. This is a massive shift in Latin America’s most populous countries, in a relatively short time.]
It’s not just Mexico. There is a murder crisis across much of Latin America and the Caribbean, which today is the world’s most violent region. Every day, more than 400 people are murdered there, a yearly tally of about 145,000 dead.
With just 8% of the world’s population, Latin America accounts for roughly a third of global murders. It is also the only region where lethal violence has grown steadily since 2000, according to United Nations figures.
Nearly one in every four murders around the world takes place in just four countries: Brazil, Venezuela, Mexico and Colombia. Last year, a record 63,808 people were murdered in Brazil. Mexico also set a record at 31,174, with murders so far this year up another 20%.
The 2016 tally in China, according to the U.N.: 8,634. For the entire European Union: 5,351. The United States: 17,250.