MEXICO CITY (AP) - U.S. and Mexican official say bloody battles along the Texas border are being fueled by a shift in allegiances among drug groups.
Three Mexican cartels have joined forces to destroy a gang of hit men known as the Zetas. The feared outfit has reach into Central America.
One banner even urged President Felipe Calderon to withdraw the army and let the new alliance exterminate the Zetas. Videos and e-mails have been sent around warning families to stay home, saying the conflict would get worse.
And the U.S. State Department extended until May 12 the authorized departure of relatives of U.S. government employees from consulates in six northern cities.
The decision came two days after a grenade attack against the U.S. consulate in Nuevo Laredo, just across the border from Laredo, Texas. Nobody was hurt.