'Multiple' US dead in Mexican bus crash

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Washington (AFP)

US authorities confirmed Wednesday that "multiple" Americans were among at least 12 people killed in a Mexican tour bus crash and that several more were hurt.

On Tuesday, a civil defense source had told AFP that Americans made up most of those killed when a bus carrying cruise passengers to archeological sites crashed off the road.

"We express our heartfelt condolences to all those affected by this tragedy," State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said.

"We are in contact with local authorities, and will continue to monitor the situation. We have staff on the scene and at local hospitals to assist victims and loved ones."

The crash happened on Tuesday on a highway in the state of Quintana Roo, on the eastern tip of the Yucatan Peninsula and well known as home to the Caribbean resort city of Cancun.

The 12 dead and 18 injured included "citizens of the United States, Sweden and Brazil," according to a brief official statement.

The bus was carrying 31 people on a straight stretch of road with little traffic and the cause of the accident was not immediately known.

A civil defense source told AFP privately that most of the dead were Americans. Among the injured were eight Americans, three Brazilians and two Swedes, the source added.

The bus was headed for a resort town called Mahahual.

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