Cuban doctor murdered near Mexico City

MEXICO CITY (AP) — A Cuban doctor was shot to death at a hospital in a rough neighborhood on the outskirts of Mexico City, authorities said.

The doctor, whose name was not released, was killed on Friday along with a nurse and another woman at a hospital in the suburb of Ecatepec, they said Monday afternoon.

The crime occurs amid criticism of President Andrés Manuel López Obrador’s plan to bring Cuban doctors to areas where there are no Mexican doctors available or where they do not want to work because they are too dangerous or remote.

The Cuban doctor murdered in Ecatepec had apparently been in the country for some time and was not part of the current program. However, his death raised questions about whether some areas of Mexico are too dangerous for Cuban doctors too.

A woman who identified herself on Facebook as the doctor’s sister identified him as Ernesto Oliva Legra.

The Attorney General’s Office of the State of Mexico, which borders Mexico City, said that two armed men broke into the hospital early Friday morning and asked at the reception for a patient.

Unable to locate her, the individuals forced the receptionist to open the door to a medical area on the second floor, where they opened fire, killing the nurse and another woman, and injuring the doctor.

The doctor died of his injuries at another hospital. The local press reported that the other victim was a woman who was visiting a relative in treatment.

Previously, gang members have stormed hospitals to kill injured rivals. Mexico has been suffering from a wave of violence against medical personnel.

In July, Medical School graduates and other residents rallied across the country against the shooting death on July 15 of Erick David Andrade, a 24-year-old intern who was treating a patient in the state. of Durango in the north of the country.

Andrade was about to complete the “social service” required of all medical students before entering a residency or internship.

On July 11, an anesthesiologist was shot dead at her home in the neighboring state of Chihuahua.

In July 2021, a doctor was killed on a highway near Jerez, Zacatecas, apparently because she failed to stop at a drug lord’s roadblock. That same month two paramedics were killed while transferring a patient in that same condition.

Critics have filed legal appeals against the plan to hire more than 500 Cuban doctors, of which more than 100 have already arrived in Mexico and are working in the states of Nayarit and Colima.

One of the lawsuits contends that the government has failed to demonstrate that Cuban doctors have the ability or training to work in Mexico, and that most of the doctors’ salaries will end up in the Cuban government’s coffers.

On Tuesday, López Obrador defended the program, insisting that Mexico does not have enough specialists.

“It is absurd and irrational to question whether Cuban medical specialists come to show solidarity with us,” the president declared.

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