Posted: 27 Nov 2021 09:58 GMT
The body of independent experts toured 13 states of the Latin American country, where it held meetings with dozens of groups of victims of violence and with authorities from the three levels of government.
The United Nations (UN) Committee against Forced Disappearance concluded its first visit to Mexico on Friday, warning that this phenomenon continues to be widespread in the national territory and that “impunity is almost absolute” in these cases.
After visiting 13 states in the country and meeting with dozens of groups of victims of violence and with authorities from the three levels of government, the Committee determined “that a
generalized situation of disappearances in a large part of the territory “.
The body urged the Government of Andrés Manuel López Obrador to adopt “a national policy of prevention to eradicate disappearance”, in view of the 95,121 cases of missing persons. The expert Carmen Rosa Villa, a member of the Committee, pointed out during a press conference that this strategy must “involve all authorities.”
In the framework of the preparation of a report that will be discussed and adopted during the twenty-second session of the Committee in Geneva (Switzerland), between March 28 and April 8 of next year, Villa advanced some of the main points collected by the experts during their visit to 13 entities: Chihuahua, Mexico City, Coahuila, Guanajuato, Guerrero, Jalisco, State of Mexico, Morelos, Nayarit, Nuevo León, Sinaloa, Tamaulipas and Veracruz.
“Impunity is almost absolute,” said Villa, adding that this scenario “favors the reproduction and cover-up of enforced disappearances“.
As part of this generalized impunity, “people disappear, but also localized bodies and even files disappear,” said the expert.
During interviews with officials and relatives of victims of violence, the United Nations Committee received information on the “coexistence between state agents and organized crime”. At the same time, the group of experts detected the “discretion” with which prosecutors operate in the country and their refusal, in many cases, to collaborate in the search for missing persons, to the extent that these agencies transfer to the families of the victims “the responsibility to investigate and provide evidence”.
“The search, the investigation, the establishment of responsibilities, the unveiling of the truth and comprehensive reparation are not always a priority for some of the authorities,” the group of experts denounced.
“They were taken alive, we want them alive,” the victims repeat insistently. The search in life is a priority task.- Carmen Rosa Villa, president of # CEDpic.twitter.com / GlJ1I2VsMG
– UN-DH Mexico (@ONUDHmexico) November 26, 2021
Members of groups of families of disappeared persons expressed their frustration at “the delay and lack of results in the investigations“as well as by the”refusal of some authorities to provide information“.
The committee of experts said that the lack of trust in Mexican institutions is aggravated “by the very small number of accusations filed, arrest warrants executed and sentences issued in cases of forced disappearance.”
It also expressed concern over the recent killings of several people who were searching for the disappeared. These crimes, added to the stigmatization that the authorities make of groups of relatives, end up generating “an inhibiting effect and a culture of not reporting for fear of reprisals.”
The UN Committee highlighted that there are legislative and institutional advances in Mexico, such as the adoption of a General Law on Victims and legislation on forced disappearance and disappearance committed by individuals, as well as the establishment of an approved protocol for the search and of state commissions for that purpose.
After making its first visit to the Latin American nation, the group of experts concluded: “So that disappearance in Mexico ceases to be a paradigm of the perfect crime, the response to all these factors is urgent, both for cases that began in the past. , as for those perpetrated recently. “