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At least 23 dead in fire at bar in Mexico, officials say

At least 23 people are dead in the Mexican state of Veracruz after a fire at a bar, the attorney general’s office said early Wednesday.

The fire happened Tuesday night in Coatzacoalcos, in the southern part of the state and the state attorney general’s office condemned “what may constitute a malicious attack.”

Eight of the dead were said to be women and 15 were men, the attorney general’s office said. Thirteen people were also seriously injured and being treated at hospitals.

Coatzacoalcos is a port city on the Gulf of Mexico coast.

Veracruz Gov. Cuitlahuac Garcia suggested that a gang dispute was involved in the attack.

“In Veracruz, criminal gangs are no longer tolerated,” Garcia wrote of the attack, adding police, the armed forces and newly formed National Guard are searching for the attackers.

The governor of Veracruz tweeted that criminal groups will not be tolerated and vowed punishment for anyone found to be involved.

The Secretary of Public Safety for the state of Veracruz tweeted its condemnation of the events that it said took place at the Caballo Blanco Bar and said there was a search operation for anyone involved.