Missing students in Mexico: arrest warrants against soldiers

Arrest warrants have been issued against several soldiers six years after 43 students disappeared in Mexico. President promises justice.

Memorial march for the disappeared in Mexico City on Saturday Foto: Rebecca Blackwell/ap

MEXICO CITY dpa | Six years after the disappearance of 43 students in southwest Mexico, arrest warrants have been issued for several suspected soldiers and a federal police officer. “There will be justice”, promised President Andrés Manuel López Obrador on Saturday. There have recently been a number of new investigative approaches. “There will be no impunity,” said State Secretary for Human Rights at the Ministry of the Interior, Alejandro Encinas. “Those responsible will be held accountable.”

On the night of September 27, 2014, 43 students from the Ayotzinapa teacher training college in Guerrero state were abducted by police officers and handed over to the Guerreros Unidos crime syndicate. According to official investigations, the young men were killed and burned in a garbage dump. However, independent studies cast doubt on this version. So far only the bones of two victims have been found. The details and background of the crime are still unclear. Nobody has been convicted to this day.

In memory of the abducted, numerous demonstrators moved from the Independence Monument to the central Zócalo square in the historic city center on Saturday in Mexico City. They chanted: “You took her alive, we want her back alive” and sprayed slogans and the number 43 on the facade of the National Palace

The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights recognized progress in the investigation, but also urged the authorities to step up their efforts. Several suspects have recently been released for torture in detention. In Mexico, over 73,000 people have disappeared. During the search for the abducted students alone, 245 bodies of other murder victims were discovered around the town of Iguala in Guerrero – only 22 have so far been identified.

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