The Americas

A look at notable dates in Mexico's decade-old drug war

Dec. 11, 2006: Then-President Felipe Calderon orders almost 7,000 soldiers to his home state of Michoacan to fight drug cartels.

June 30, 2008: U.S. announces $1.6 billion in anti-drug aid for Mexico under the Merida Initiative.

Jan. 31, 2008: A gang bursts into a party and kills 16 young people in Ciudad Juarez, across the border from El Paso, Texas. The victims' relatives yell at Calderon.

Aug. 23, 2010: The bodies of 72 migrants killed by the Zetas drug gang are found in San Fernando, Tamaulipas state.

May 5, 2011: An organized victims' movement is born with the start of the Caravan for Peace with Justice and Dignity.

Aug. 25, 2011: Zetas gunmen set fire to the Casino Royale in Monterrey, killing 52 people.

May 13, 2012: The mutilated bodies of 49 people are dumped on a northern highway.

Feb 24, 2013: The first of the "self-defense" vigilante forces takes up arms against the cartels in Michoacan.

Feb. 22, 2014: Drug lord Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman of the Sinaloa cartel is arrested. He escapes from prison the following year, and is recaptured in early 2016.

June 30, 2014: Mexican soldiers kill 22 suspects at a warehouse in Tlatlaya, Mexico State. News media later present evidence that most were executed after being captured.

Sept. 26, 2014: In the city of Iguala, Guerrero state, 43 students disappear after corrupt police detain and turn them over to a drug gang.

December 2016: Homicide rates, which had fallen, return to levels near those of 2012.