Oaxaca’s human rights ombudsman has accused a former governor of crimes against humanity in a case filed with the International Criminal Court (ICC).
Arturo Peimbert Calvo alleges that Ulises Ruiz Ortiz, who governed the state between 2004 and 2010, committed the crimes during a period of conflict in 2006 and 2007.
The state was embroiled in the largest teachers’ protest in recent history, and the violence that ensued left 30 people dead.
Peimbert told a press conference that 311 people were illegally detained, 248 were tortured and at least two were forcibly disappeared.
He accused Ruiz of using state resources for the illegal detainment of protesters and initiating actions by illegal armed groups to instill terror among citizens and commit extrajudicial killings.
The ombudsman said Ruiz’s formula for the containment of a social movement has been replicated elsewhere in the country since. He cited another teacher protest in Nochixtlán, Oaxaca, in 2016 that killed eight people.
Since 2006, he said, his office has recorded 103 deaths with political overtones. The victims included political leaders, party representatives, municipal authorities and others.
Peimbert said no one other than Ruiz holds greater responsibility for the conflict and the outcome of the incidents in 2006-2007.
An accusation of crimes against humanity accompanied the release two years ago of a report by a truth commission that looked into the conflict. It said Ruiz and other officials were responsible for human rights abuses that included crimes against humanity, extrajudicial assassinations, arbitrary arrests and torture.