Disturbing body camera footage captured the moment soldiers tried to save the lives of four soldiers who were killed at a drug cartel camp in the western Mexican state of Michoacán.
President Andrés Manuel López Obrador confirmed their deaths on Friday during his daily press conference in Mexico City.
The leftist leader said army soldiers were carrying out a surveillance mission in the town of Aguililla on Thursday and searching a field when an improvised explosive device hidden in the brush exploded.
One of the soldiers died immediately and the other three died later from their injuries.
Nine soldiers were wounded in the ambush.
Four Mexican army soldiers were killed and nine others were injured after an improvised explosive device detonated at a camp in Aguililla, Mexico, on Thursday.
Soldiers try to save one of their troops during an attack in the western Mexican state of Michoacan on Thursday.
“They found out about a camp and they went to the camp, as far as they could go, they did it in vehicles, then they walked, but on the way back they did not take the same path but another,” said López Obrador.
“We deeply regret this crime,” he added. “I regret.”
Sources from the security cabinet told the Mexican newspaper El Universal that the soldiers were attacked with firearms and drones equipped with explosives while they were touring an area located between the villages of El Montoso and El Terrenatillo, in Aguililla.
The military was working in a territory dominated by the Jalisco Nueva Generación Cartel.
On Friday, four soldiers and a helicopter were shot at in El Terrenatillo, according to Radio Formula.
The Mexican military was inspecting cartel camps and were reportedly attacked with gunfire and explosive-laden drones.
The aircraft made an emergency landing. It is unknown if any of the soldiers were injured.
The deaths come as gun violence has soared in Mexico under López Obrador’s government.
Under his “hugs, not bullets” crime policy, at least 180,000 murders have been recorded since he took office in December 2018.
Brutal murders of police and military have become commonplace.
Last week, two local candidates for the upcoming June 2 elections were shot to death in another Michoacan city just hours apart.
The election is on track to be one of the most violent in Mexican history.