Sunday, June 16, 2024

AMLO calls police killing of Ayotzinapa student ‘an abuse of authority’

President Andrés Manuel López Obrador said Monday that a student who authorities say was killed by state police in Guerrero last week “did not shoot,” and therefore “there was an abuse of authority.”

“The file is already in the hands of the [federal] Attorney General’s Office [FGR], and we are not going to allow any interference [or] temptation to defend those responsible,” AMLO stated at his morning press conference, or mañanera, at the National Palace.

Last Thursday around 9:30 p.m., a 23-year-old student at the Ayotzinapa Rural Teachers’ College in Tixtla, Guerrero, was reportedly shot by police in the state capital of Chilpancingo at a checkpoint attempting to find stolen cars.

Yanqui Khotan Gómez Peralta was one of two students in a pickup truck heading toward Chilpancingo that was reported as stolen, according to a statement from the Guerrero Ministry of Public Security (SSP). A third person in the vehicle, allegedly a Nissan Frontier, reportedly had exited before the checkpoint.

The statement also said that police came under fire when they approached the truck.

According to the online newspaper Sin Embargo, which cited a medical report, the deceased student “had a bullet in the head, in the manner of execution.”

Parents of Ayotzinapa 43 kidnapping victims protesting at Mexico's senate
Parents of the Ayotzinapa 43 protest outside the Mexican Senate in February. (Galo Cañas/Cuartoscuro)

The incident occurred one day after a protest by Ayotzinapa students at Mexico City’s National Palace, in which a Federal Electricity Commission (CFE) pickup truck was used as a battering ram. The protest was related to the 2014 disappearance and presumed murder of 43 male students who were studying at Ayotzinapa to become teachers.

Gómez reportedly participated in pilgrimages to Mexico City, where students from the Ayotzinapa school and their supporters have staged protests.

Guerrero government officials asserted last week that there was no concerted effort on the part of state police to go after students from the Ayotzinapa school.

“I am very, very sorry for what happened” in this incident, López Obrador said Monday morning. “An investigation has already been launched to punish those responsible and I send my condolences to family and friends. We are not going to allow impunity. Those responsible are going to be punished.”

He also mentioned that police officers have been detained in relation to the incident.

Meanwhile, the National Front for Rural Normalist Graduates (FNENR) said the state police “tried to disappear the body and the injured colleague [Osiel Faustino Jimón Dircio], because they did not wait” for the Forensic Medical Service (SEMEFO) to arrive at the scene.

Moreover, the group claimed, “the truck was transferred with everything and [the dead] body to the corralón,” or police impound lot.

Additionally, FNENR accused the state government of defaming and criminalizing the deceased “by telling the media that they were [carrying] drugs and weapons.”

With reports from El Universal, Sin Embargo and Milenio

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