A horrifying image of a bloody 7-month-old baby lying dead next to his parents on the sidewalk has caused a stir in Mexico.
The photo shows the family of three after they were killed in the city of Pinotepa Nacional in Oaxaca state, according to the Oaxaca State Attorney's Office.
The 7-month-old has been identified as Marcos Miguel Pano Colon, accompanied by his father, 24-year-old Juan Alberto Pano Ramos and mother, 17-year-old Alba Isabel Colon. The family was gunned down on Jan. 29 outside a convenience store, reports CNN.
After pictures of their bodies were posted on Facebook and other social media sites, it sparked debate over Mexican society’s acceptance of widespread gang violence. The photo has been compared to the image of the drowned Syrian toddler, Alan Kurdi, washed up on a Turkish beach in September 2015, according to Daily Mail.
“This picture is running all around the world. It is just like the Syrian boy,” read a post from Santiago Pinotepa Nacional Oaxaca, a Facebook page dedicated to the city. “Pinotepa Nacional became famous last night, not from an earthquake, sadly, but because of this image.”
The page also posted a picture of a cute baby boy being washed in a bucket of water, who is claimed to be Marcos.
Solo Acapulco, a Facebook account focused on promoting the city of Acapulco in neighboring Guerrero state, posted a cropped version of the same photo and also compared it to Alan Kurd, reports the Daily Mail.
The caption read:
“Do you remember the Syrian boy? Do you remember how indignant you were, and how you put your flag on Facebook? Because this is what happens in Mexico, to be precise in Pinotepa Oaxaca, where drug traffickers killed this family, including this little angel of seven months.”
The post received 52,524 shares when it was posted, according to Daily Mail.
“We always support foreign countries and believe that what happens in Mexico is either something we deserve or that is it normal,” said a top-voted reply to the post, with 1,626 likes.
“Like when people put the French flag in (their Facebook) photos -- that was just an attack, but here in Mexico thousands of innocent people die every day because of crime.”
“This is our sad and terrible reality: That we live in a rotten country, where our independence from foreign powers did not help us much, where we are now our own tormentors... today we are cowards and allow this pass... the laws are just for show,” replied another Facebook user.
Officials told CNN that authorities arrested four people on Jan. 30 in connection to the gang-related killings. CNN also reported that the boy's parents were selling drugs and were killed by a rival gang.
On the same night the family of three was killed in Pinotepa Nacional, another family of three, including a 14-year-old girl, were gunned down in the municipality of Miahuatlan, according to CNN.
The Trans-Border Institute at the University of San Diego, which studies crime in the country, says that from 2006-2012, the total number of murders in Mexico were possibly up to 125,000, reports Daily Mail.