One person was killed and three others, including two children, were wounded when gunmen threw a grenade over the weekend outside the aquarium in the Mexican Gulf city of Veracruz, state officials said.

The incident occurred around 7:00 p.m. Sunday while marines chased the gunmen.

The blast occurred outside the Veracruz Aquarium, which is on Manuel Avila Camacho boulevard, a popular tourist area in the port city.

The gunmen threw the grenade into the street with the "intention of distracting and evading their pursuers," a state government spokesman told Efe.

The victims were treated at the scene and transported to hospitals, where an adult male later died.

Veracruz Gov. Javier Duarte de Ochoa visited the aquarium and later held a meeting with his top officials, ordering the Attorney General's Office to investigate the attack.

The governor also ordered more patrols in the Veracruz-Boca del Rio region, the main area visited by tourists in the Gulf state.

"We Veracruzans are stronger than any enemy. As both a government and a society, we will not allow criminals to steal the peace to which we have a right," the governor said.

Veracruz has been the scene of a number of violent incidents in recent months blamed on the war among the Los Zetas, Gulf and La Familia Michoacana cartels for control of smuggling routes.