Mexican soldiers kill ten after highway ambush near U.S. border

MEXICO CITY (Reuters) - Mexican soldiers killed ten members of a criminal group accused of ambushing a military patrol near the U.S. border in the violent northern state of Tamaulipas on Saturday, the government said.

A military convoy was attacked by armed men in several vehicles on a highway outside the border city of Nuevo Laredo, according to a statement from the state's joint military and police task force.

Troops killed eight people after the ambush and chased attackers, leading to another firefight where two more were killed. A woman driving a truck was hit by a stray bullet and later died in a hospital, the task force said.

After seeing a downward trend since 2012, drug gang killings began to rise last year. Tamaulipas is one of the country's most violent states and a bastion of the Zetas drug gang.

(Reporting by Anahi Rama; Writing by Michael O'Boyle; Editing by Mary Milliken)