Suspected car bomb explodes in cartel-dominated Mexican city, wounds several National Guard officers

An apparent booby trap or car bomb exploded in a cartel-dominated Mexican city, wounding several officers of Mexico’s National Guard, who approached the vehicle to inspect it, authorities confirmed Thursday.

The National Guard said the explosion occurred late Wednesday in the city of Celaya, in the north-central state of Guanajuato, where the Jalisco and Santa Rosa de Lima drug cartels have been fighting a bloody turf war for years.

The use of a car bomb to intentionally cause law enforcement casualties marks an escalation of the infighting between rival cartels and is reminiscent of a 2010 car bomb blast that killed three people in the northern border city of Ciudad Juarez at the height of the 2006-2012 drug war.

The officers were reportedly responding to a report about a car parked with what appeared to be bodies inside. As they approached, the vehicle exploded, sending guard officers flying. There was no immediate information on the condition of the wounded, though at least three suffered considerable injuries that required hospitalization.

Read more: ABC News