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Gunmen kill Panama footballer Hernandez, injure 7 others



Gunmen kill Panama footballer Hernandez, injure 7 others 


A yet-to-be-identified group of armed men in Panama on Sunday shot dead Gilberto Hernandez, a footballer who plays for the country’s national team.

According to reports, the gunmen invaded a building in the city of Colon which Hernandez was in and opened fire on a group of people believed to be friends of the footballer.

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It is yet unknown if Hernandez was the target of the shooting or what the motive was.

Sunday’s incident is not new in Colon as there has been incessant killings in the city over the past months.

Details revealed that some of the killings were as a result of the clash between two rival gangs contending for the control of lucrative drug smuggling routes.

According to the BBC, no fewer than 50 people have been killed in Colón, a city of 40,000 inhabitants, so far this year, the report said.

The port city, on the north entrance to the Panama Canal, is a transit point for cocaine smuggled from South America through Panama to Europe.

Two gunmen forced a taxi driver to take them to a building in the city’s Barrio Norte neighbourhood and opened fire on the group gathered there and fled the scene after the shooting.

Hernández made his debut in the Panamanian national side in March this year in a match against Guatemala.

The player’s father urged the youth of Colón “to stop the violence”, and called on the authorities to “launch projects to save the youth from this violence”.

He also asked the killers to hand themselves in, “Don’t cause more harm.”

Panama’s football federation and Hernández’s club, Club Atlético Independiente have expressed their condolences to his family.

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