At least eight people died and about a dozen were wounded, including four children, in violence around Guatemala over the past 12 hours, authorities and emergency services personnel reported Sunday.

A spokesman with the National Civil Police, or PNC, told reporters that the eight victims were shot in several incidents in the Guatemalan capital and vicinity.

In Villa Nueva, one of the capital's southern suburbs, the bodies of two men were found, both of whom had been bound hand and foot, tortured and then executed by gunshots, the Volunteer Firefighters said in a report.

The body of a man bearing several bullet wounds was found on the highway linking the capital with the city of Escuintla, to the south.

On Saturday night, three men were murdered by unknown gunmen who fired on customers at a liquor store in Mixco, southwest of the capital.

The PNC, the attackers were riding on motorcycles and the motive for the killings could be "a settling of scores or a case of extortion."

In the central part of Guatemala City, a man was shot to death on the street by unknown killers.

In the community of Cerro Gordo, in the northwest, a shootout between rival gangs left a dozen people wounded, including four children who happened to get caught in the crossfire.

Another man was killed on a busy street in the western part of the capital by presumed assassins riding on motorcycles.

According to official figures, an average of 15 people are murdered in Guatemala each day, making the country one of the most violent in Latin America on a per capita basis. EFE