Conflicts & War

Mexican army post vandalized in protest over Ayotzinapa case

Chilpancingo, Mexico, Sep 13 (EFE).- A protest Tuesday over the September 2014 abduction and murder of 43 students from Ayotzinapa teacher’s college in the southern state of Guerrero ended with acts of vandalism against a Mexican army installation.

The demonstration outside the headquarters of the 35th Military Zone in Chilpancingo, the state capital, was led by parents of the 43 Ayotzinapa victims.

The families were joined by activists from the Federation of Peasant and Socialist Students of Mexico.

As speakers addressed the crowd, groups of students wearing hoods removed the barricades and tire-puncture strips surrounding the base and painted the walls with slogans such as “It was the State,” and “Murderous government.”

When the rally concluded, the Ayotzinapa parents began making their way back to the buses that brought the protesters to the site, but student militants hurled firecrackers at the walls and interior of the headquarters.

They also used a soft-drink delivery truck to ram through the main gate.

An attempt to set the vehicle ablaze with firecrackers was not successful.

The army personnel at the headquarters did not respond and all of the protesters eventually left aboard the buses.

Parents and their supporters are planning to hold events every day over the next two weeks, culminating in a major mobilization on Sept. 27 in Iguala, where the crime unfolded.

On the night of Sept. 26, 2014, students from the Ayotzinapa Normal School, an all-male college known for its leftist activism, were attacked in Iguala after they had commandeered buses to travel to Mexico City for a protest.

Six people – including three students – were killed in the assault, 25 were injured and 43 students were abducted and presumably slain later.

Nearly a month ago, the truth commission established to investigate the case deemed the mass abduction and murder a “state crime” involving local, state and federal officials.

The panel, appointed by President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, also concluded “that federal and state authorities at the highest levels were careless and negligent” in the original probe of the crime.

The administration of then-President Enrique Peña Nieto said in 2015 that the students were killed by a local drug gang after being abducted by municipal cops acting on the orders of Iguala’s corrupt mayor, and that their bodies were incinerated at a dump in the nearby town of Cocula.

Victims’ families were immediately skeptical of that account, as was the Interdisciplinary Group of Independent Experts, a team assembled by the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights who concluded that the bodies could not have been disposed of in the way authorities claimed.

Lopez Obrador, who likewise rejected the account presented by his predecessor’s government, launched a new probe shortly after taking office in December 2018. EFE fm/dr

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