Marchers remember Ayotzinapa today in Mexico City Marchers remember Ayotzinapa today in Mexico City. milenio

Truth over Ayotzinapa remains a mystery

As do the whereabouts of the 43 students themselves

The two-year investigation into the disappearance of the 43 students from the Ayotzinapa teacher college in Guerrero has been ponderously slow and plagued with accusations of irregularities.

Now, those who have been detained for their alleged involvement may soon go free if they can prove their accusations that they were tortured.

More than half of the 130 individuals currently detained (reports on the number differ; some say there are 120) have made legal filings alleging torture and arbitrary arrest, some of which are ongoing while others are under review.

Among those awaiting trial are former Iguala mayor José Luis Abarca and his wife, María de los Ángeles Pineda, both singled out as financial operators in the Guerreros Unidos drug gang, and the gang’s former leader, Sidronio Casarrubias Salgado.

Three more individuals have been accused of being the actual perpetrators in the disappearance of the youths: Patricio “El Pato” Reyes Landa, Jonathan “El Jona” Osorio Gómez and Agustín “El Chereje” García Reyes.

The director of the human rights group Centro Prodh, Mario Patrón, said it was deplorable that due to poor practices on the part of officials some of the accused could be set free.

If that should happen, he said, “the PGR will be the only one to blame.”

He said the GIEI [Interdisciplinary Group of Independent Experts] documented 17 cases of torture, accusations for which the PGR has 32 cases open, while the National Human Rights Commission (CNDH) has collected over 60 complaints for the same crime.

Patrón, who also represents the relatives of the missing students, said that two years on the balance is troubling due to the series of irregularities that the GIEI documented in the case.

They include crime scenes that were not certified, sampled and processed properly; arbitrary arrests; and irregular mobilization of PGR officials to key scenes for the investigation, resulting in tampering of evidence.

“Despite having arrested a large number of suspects the truth is yet to be uncovered and, above all, the whereabouts of the students,” Patrón said.

He accused the PGR of trying to build a case based on witness accounts and the statements given by those under arrest, instead of scientific facts.

Of former attorney general Jesús Murillo Karam’s involvement, Patrón believes he didn’t have the competence to perform the investigation.

“[The PGR] stretched a single line of investigation until they constructed an alleged truth, which in the end was proven to be a historic lie.”

“Current investigations are starting to show some progress, but two years on it’s rather overdue.”

Thousands of people marched today in Mexico City to mark the two-year anniversary. After arriving in the zócalo, a spokesman for the families of the 43 victims invited Mexicans to declare they’d had enough of “this corrupt and murderous government.”

“We are not going to commemorate, we are going to protest, we are going to fight and we are going to get rid of this rotten government; we cannot commemorate anything . . . .” said Felipe de la Cruz.

One of the parents of the missing students said they would continue to search until their children were found. Another said they rise every morning with the hope that they will find them.

Source: El Universal (sp), Milenio (sp)

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