Police in Mexico have detained four men suspected of involvement in the killing of a land rights activist from the state of Morelos.

Alejandro Salgado Delgado of the Popular Revolutionary Front disappeared Tuesday in the eastern part of the state after a meeting with area residents.

The Morelos state government said in a statement Thursday that the four suspects appeared to be members of the same organization who had differences with Salgado.

An official who insisted on not being quoted by name because he was not authorized to speak publicly about the case said Salgado's body was found decapitated and with severed hands.

The Popular Revolutionary Front blamed the state government, suggesting the killing was meant to intimidate the group. It said Salgado had defended land rights in the state.