Disabled Man Is Lone Resident of a Mexican Town Ravaged by Drug Violence

Pedro Pardo/AFP/Getty Images

Welcome to Ixtayotla, Mexico. Population: 1.

The residents of this town in Guerrero, a state in southwestern Mexico, fled their homes last week after gunmen attacked several nearby communities, kidnapping people and possibly forcing some to join their ranks.

All the members of Ixtayotla's 36 families abandoned the area on foot and on a few pickup trucks, save for one man, Victor Manuel, whose mental disability prevented him from joining the rest of the villagers.

The drug war in Mexico has forced some 140,000 people to flee their homes since 2007, according to human rights groups. Just last week, some 800 people in the mountains of Guerrero fled their villages, as criminal groups tried to assert control over parts of the strategically positioned state.

To learn more about Victor Manuel and his tragic role in Mexico's refugee crisis, click on the video above.


For more than 40 years, the U.S. government has waged a war on drugs. Unfortunately, there are many issues with that war and its perceived success.

comments powered by Disqus

Mexico Moving Forward

Covering Protests: The New Danger for Journalists in Mexico

Here’s Article 19’s break-down of aggressions against journalists in 2013: Total Acts of Agression: 330 Physical Attacks: 146 Assassinations: 4 Kidnappings: 7 Threats Against Journalists: 53 Acts of Judicial Intimidation [lawsuits]: 15 Abductions “Disappeared” Journalists: 2 Arbitrary Arrests: 36 Cyber Attacks Against Media: 12 Indirect Threats: 53 Journalist Forced to Move: 1 According to Sandoval, assassinations, kidnappings, death threats, and acts of physical aggression have hurt journalism in Mexico, as these events force reporters to limit what issues they cover, and how deep they go into topics like the actions of corrupt officers and criminal groups.