At least eight people, including seven police officers, were killed and eight others wounded in three shootouts involving police and drug cartel gunmen on the border of Jalisco and Michoacan states in western Mexico, officials said.
The shootouts occurred on Sunday, Michoacan Attorney General's Office and security officials told Efe.
Four police officers in the city of Briseñas were killed in an ambush staged by gunmen when they responded to a report of a traffic accident early Sunday, the officials said.
The officers were attacked by the gunmen at kilometer 53 of the highway to Vista Hermosa.
Five other officers were wounded in the shootout on the highway, officials said.
The dead officers were identified as Fernando Guzman Garcia, Arturo Alvarez Chavez, Enrique Mendez Molina and Francisco Javier Bustos Ornelas.
The wounded officers were transported to the hospital in La Barca, a city in Jalisco.
A shootout started a few minutes later in Ayotlan, a city located a few kilometers from Briseñas, leaving three officers and a suspected gunman dead, Jalisco state security officials and city officials said.
One person was wounded in the incident, officials said.
Initial reports said a group of gunmen attacked officers from Ayotlan on a highway near the city, but Jalisco AG's office investigators have not ruled out the possibility that there was actually an attack on city hall.
The gunmen fled to a town in Michoacan, where the suspects are apparently based, state officials said.
Two police officers, meanwhile, were wounded in a shootout in Quitupan, a city near Michoacan, with gunmen riding in three SUVs.
The gunmen ambushed the officers in an area outside the city on Sunday morning, officials said.
No arrests have been made in connection with any of the incidents.
The Jalisco Public Safety Secretariat launched a sweep after the shootouts, while the Michoacan AG's office opened an investigation of the shootouts. EFE