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The death of Giovanni López while in custody has triggered several protests. The death of Giovanni López while in custody has triggered several protests.

UN human rights office accuses abuse by police in five cities

'It is essential to distinguish between those who carry out violent actions from those who demonstrate peacefully'

As new reports of police brutality and excessive force continue to surface, the Mexico Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (ONU-DH) says that police in several parts of the country have violated citizens’ rights.

“The ONU-DH received worrying information about police actions contrary to international standards on the use of force during recent protests in various locations in Mexico: Tijuana, Guadalajara, San Luis Potosí, Mexico City, Puerto Morelos, among others,” the agency said. 

“We issue a remember that the main objective of police action in demonstrations or protests is the protection of protesters, third parties and public and private property, and not the confinement of or confrontation with those who demonstrate.”

The organization recalled that there are international principles on the use of force, the foremost being prevention and precaution, and called for investigations into possible acts of police brutality.

“Allegations of violation of the principles of use of force, including complaints of excessive use of lethal force, must be subject to a prompt, independent, diligent and impartial investigation and determine responsibilities, including hierarchical superiors,” the ONU-DH said.

Police in Puerto Morelos, Quintana Roo, have been accused of using excessive force while arresting protesters on June 5.

 

“It is essential to distinguish between those who carry out violent actions from those who demonstrate peacefully and the human rights defenders and journalists present.”

Since the death of Giovanni López while in police custody in Jalisco on May 5, protests have intensified.

In Guadalajara, police illegally detained several young people who were trying to protest, while in Mexico City uniformed officers kicked a 16-year-old girl in the head during a demonstration.

In Puerto Morelos, Quintana Roo, officers allegedly attacked people protesting in a park, and in Baja California, the state Commission on Human Rights is investigating at least five cases of excessive use of force this year by police during arrests in Tijuana and Ensenada.

Source: Reforma (sp),  Síntesis TV (sp)

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