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6 police officers killed, 4 wounded in Mexico ambush after fighting "heroically" in outnumbered attack, officials say

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Six police officers were killed and four others wounded Sunday in the northern Mexico border state of Nuevo Leon after they were ambushed by a presumed drug gang equipped with 10 homemade armored cars and heavy weaponry, authorities said.

Nuevo Leon state police said the patrol was outnumbered in the pre-dawn attack on a highway leading to the Colombia border crossing. The force said the officers performed "heroically" in the attack.

"The Civil Force reiterates their commitment to safeguard the residents of Nuevo Leon and committing that these acts do NOT go unpunished," the force said.

State prosecutors said the officers who died in the line of duty included one female officer. The prosecutor's office listed the names of the six a tweet, adding: "Rest in peace."

There was no immediate information on the identity of the attackers. But the nearby city of Nuevo Laredo has long been dominated by the violent Northeast cartel, the successor to the old Zetas cartel.

Nuevo Leon suffered heavy violence under the Zetas cartel in the last decade. After quieting somewhat, it has seen an uptick in killings so far this year, Including the horrifying death of an 18-year-old law student in Monterrey, a northern city in Nuevo Leon.

In March, the Northeast cartel's alleged leader Juan Gerardo Treviño, also known as "El Huevo," was arrested. The U.S. Justice Department called Treviño the "drug trafficker, enforcer, weapons procurer, and plaza leader" of the cartel.

The deadly ambush in Nuevo Leon comes just days after four police officers were shot to death after being drawn into an ambush in western Mexico. Authorities said as many as eight suspected attackers were killed in a gunbattle with other police who rushed to the site.

Mexico has registered more than 340,000 murders and tens of thousands of disappearances since launching a controversial military offensive against organized crime in 2006.

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