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Third priest in a year murdered in Mexican state of Guerrero

A view of the seminary in Ciudad Altamirano, where Fr Lopez Gorostieta worked (AP)

Unknown assailants have killed a third priest in a year in the south-western Mexican state of Guerrero.

Fr Gregorio Lopez Gorostieta was reportedly kidnapped by a gang in the early hours of Monday. The motive for the murder is currently unknown.

His bishop, Bishop Maximino Martínez, said a group of men had been seen loitering around the seminary in Ciudad Altamirano where Fr Lopez Gorostieta taught.

According to AP, Bishop Martínez said: “This is another priest added to those who have died for their love of Christ. Enough already of so much pain, of so many murders. Enough already of so much crime. Enough extortions.”

In September, police found the body of Fr Ascension Acuna Osorio in the Balsas River, near Ciudad Altamirano.

In November, they found the remains of Fr John Ssenyondo, a Ugandan priest kidnapped roughly six months earlier, in a mass grave in the town of Ocotitlan.

A number of ruthless drug gangs are active in Guerrero state, including the Knights Templar Cartel.

Nine priests have been killed in Mexico in the past two years and two more remain missing.