- (Photo: AP Photo / Israel Leal)
An armed gunman opened fire outside of a Cancun bar, killing six people, Mexican authorities revealed.
Two men that were carrying assault weapons, including a machine gun and a hand gun, and began shooting at a popular watering hole just outside the Mexican tourist resort town of Cancun Thursday.
The incident left six people dead and seriously wounded five others, who were then taken to local area hospitals for treatment, the office of the state's attorney general in a statement.
The five surviving victims were being guarded by military personnel at the hospital over fears that the assailants or others involved in the killings could strike again, authorities added.
Cancun has long been a major tourist destination for thousands of young adults who frequent the beach resort on Mexico's Caribbean coast annually during spring break.
While Cancun has been able to avoid some of the drug related violence that has hit other popular resort towns such as Acapulco, it has not been able to completely prevent it.
Mexico has endured several years of extreme violence that has been tied to the country's drug cartels and the Mexican military.
This is the most deadly event since last month, when six Spanish women were raped by masked gunmen who forced their way into their Acapulco beach house.
Security forces have been increasing their patrols to protect foreign travelers. Armed army personnel are stationed at the most popular parts of Cancun, including the northern end of the Zona Hotelera, where most of the nightclubs are located.
President of Mexico Enrique Pena Nieto has vowed to reduce the violence that has raged ever since former Mexican president Felipe Calderon began his crackdown on the drug cartels. Since that action began in 2007, there have been a reported 70,000 people killed in drug-related violence.