“Six of the 43 disappeared students were allegedly held during several days and alive in what they call the old warehouse and from there were turned over to then colonel Jose Rodriguez Perez,” says official leading Truth Commission.
Six of the 43 college students “disappeared” in 2014 have been allegedly kept alive in a warehouse for days then turned over to the local army commander who ordered them killed, the Mexican government official leading a Truth Commission has said.
Interior Undersecretary Alejandro Encinas made the shocking revelation directly tying the military to one of Mexico’s worst human rights scandals, and it came with little fanfare as he made a lengthy defence of the commission’s report released a week earlier.
“There is also information corroborated with emergency 089 telephone calls where allegedly six of the 43 disappeared students were held during several days and alive in what they call the old warehouse and from there were turned over to the colonel,” Encinas said on Friday.
“Allegedly the six students were alive for as many as four days after the events and were killed and disappeared on orders of the colonel, allegedly the then colonel Jose Rodriguez Perez.”
The students’ parents demanded for years that they be allowed to search the army base in Iguala. It was not until 2019 that they were given access along with Encinas and the Truth Commission.
‘Report is not enough’
Through a driving rain later on Friday, the families of the 43 missing students marched in Mexico City with a couple hundred other people as they have on the 26th of every month for years.
Parents carried posters of their children’s faces and rows of current students from the teachers’ college marched, shouted calls for justice and counted off to 43. Their signs proclaimed that the fight for justice continued and asserted: “It was the State.”
In a joint statement, the families said the Truth Commission’s confirmation that it was a “state crime” was significant after elements suggesting that over the years.
However, they said the report still did not satisfactorily answer their most important question.
“Mothers and fathers need indubitable scientific evidence as to the fate of our children,” the statement said.
“We can’t go home with preliminary signs that don’t fully clear up where they are and what happened to them.”
Last week, federal agents arrested former attorney general Jesus Murillo Karam, who oversaw the original investigation.
Prosecutors allege Murillo Karam created a false narrative about what happened to the students to quickly appear to resolve the case.
Mexico arrests ex-top prosecutor over disappearance of 43 students