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THE AMERICAS

Drug gang banners seen in Mexico ahead of Pope's visit

Officials say a drug gang has unfurled banners in a central Mexican city that Pope Benedict XVI is scheduled to visit next month.

The officials refused to confirm what the banners said, though an employee of the Guanajuato state prosecutors office says the banners that appeared on overpasses on Monday involved a dispute between gangs. He asked his name not be used because he was not authorized to comment.

Local news media reported that at least one of the handwritten banners urged "let there be peace during the Pope's visit."

The official said Tuesday the banners had been taken down.

Some of the banners appeared in the city of Leon, where the archdiocese earlier issued an appeal for peace during the papal visit.