Thursday, October 30, 2014

México: Protesters, IACHR Express Concern, Political Impact in Washington, DC

According to EFE, a group of protesters demanding justice for the 43 education students who disappeared last month in the southern Mexican state of Guerrero jeered and chanted slogans Thursday (October 30) at México’s delegation to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) in Washington, DC.

The demonstrators chanted “criminals, murderers!” at Mexican officials in the US capital to explain the Mexican government’s position at the body’s 153rd session.

“It is obvious that the Mexican government has provided an official version that is not true. We are here today to break that official version,” Salvador Sarmiento, a spokesman for the protesters, said.

Sarmiento invited rights activists to attend one of the five sessions on México being held by the IACHR.

Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto met on Wednesday with relatives of the 43 education students who went missing last month in the city of Iguala and later offered in a nationwide address to dramatically increase the search for the families of the disappeared.

The students disappeared on September 26 during a series of violent incidents in the city blamed on municipal police and drug traffickers.

COMMENT: Neither the Office of the Presidency nor the Guerrero state government are in a position of strength at this time, considering federal officials should have been privy to corruption in high office within their own government with few knowledgeable officials in a position of knowing how and where the 43 students disappeared approaching a month ago.

Worse, the federal government is seemingly ill-prepared to produce cartel members or the former mayor of Iguala and his wife, who reportedly was a key leader in the state-level corruption scandal.

The case of the missing students is expected to come up at the first IACHR session requested by the Mexican government to explain its national human rights program.

Discussing “the National Human Rights Program will not solve anything,” Jacqueline Saenz, a member of the Fundar human rights group, told EFE.

Deputy Foreign Relations Secretary Juan Manuel Gómez Robledo told EFE that Mexico’s government and representatives of the missing students’ families would seek to reach an agreement with the IACHR to form a panel of experts to help find the 43 students who have disappeared.

Municipal police fired at students on the night of September 26 at the behest of then-Iguala Mayor José Luís Abarca, and his wife, María de los Angeles Pineda, both of whom are now fugitives from justice as well as key members of the Guerrerros Unidos drug cartel who are also fugitives.

Six people died on September 26, including three trainee teachers; 25 who were wounded; and 43 others who were detained by police and turned over to a Guerreros Unidos lieutenant identified only as “Gil.”

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