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Two suspected drug dealers were killed by gunmen from a rival gang who stormed ashore to carry out the killings on a beach on Mexico's resort-studded Caribbean coast.
The dramatic shooting sent tourists scrambling for cover at the resort of Puerto Morelos, just south of Cancun.
The drug dealers killed had apparently arrived at the beach in front of the Azul Beach Resort and the Hyatt Ziva Riviera Cancun earlier in the day, claiming it was now their territory.
Head prosecutor of Quintana Roo state, Oscar Montes de Oca, told the Radio Formula station: "About 15 people arrived on the beach to assassinate two men who had showed up saying they were the new dealers in the area."
Montes de Oca's office said earlier 'there was a clash between rival groups of drug dealers on a beach' near the hotels. Several cartels are fighting for the area's lucrative retail drug trade, including the Jalisco cartel and a gang allied with the Gulf cartel.
Governor Carlos Joaquin said the gang members wore ski masks and arrived by boat at the beach, while Mr Montes de Oca said they fled in a boat after the attack.
Mr Joaquin called the attack 'a serious blow to the development and security of the state' adding that they'd put 'the image of the state at grave risk'.
The shootings were the latest chapter in drug gang violence that has sullied the reputation of Mexico's Caribbean coast as a once-tranquil oasis.
Twitter user Mike Sington told Reuters he took cover with other guests at his hotel. Other guests told him they heard gunshots and that a gunman had been on the beach, he said.
"In hiding in the dark now. Was told active shooter on property," Sington said. "Paramedics are here."
Sington later tweeted guests were taken out of hiding and brought to the lobby, where they cried and hugged each other.
At least one tourist who was in the area was treated for a head injury, local television network Milenio reported.
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