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43 youths were arrested and forcibly disappeared in 2014



FMSI calls on the Mexican authorities to make a general reassessment of the investigation

13/10/2015: General House

On October of 2014 the FMSI Cono Sur office called on the Mexican State to conduct an independent, prompt and effective investigation into the dramatic events in the town of Iguala in Guerrero state, on the night of September 26.

On that night, local police attacked a large group of students from the Normal Rural de Ayotzinapa School “Raúl Isidro Burgos” with firearms. As a result, 6 people were killed, over 40 injured and 43 youths were arrested and forcibly disappeared. The official record of the investigation indicates that both police officers and the army knew of the capture and violence towards the students.

A year later and based on the recommendations of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, IACHR[i]FMSI has again called on the Mexican authorities to make a general reassessment of the investigation. The Marist Provinces of Mexico and the Inter-American Marist Solidarity Network have also participated in different solidarity initiatives with the families of the missing youth.

The “Normales Rurales” are teacher-training centres promoted by the State after the Mexican Revolution, to train farmers as subjects of social transformation. However, with the advent of neoliberalism, which began in the 80s, the Normales no longer count on State support. For this reason, they battle each year to not disappear.

The young students of Ayotzinapa have been a benchmark of social struggle and a major player for the political life ofGuerrero, one of the states with the highest rates of social exclusion of Mexico. Many sectors of Mexican society agree that this case represents the historical continuity of authoritarian politics, which ranges from the student slaughter in Tlatelolco in 1968 until today.

A recent visit of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) noted that there is a “serious human rights crisis that Mexico is experiencing, characterized by an extreme situation of insecurity and violence; serious violations, in particular forced disappearances, extrajudicial executions and torture; critical levels of impunity and an inadequate and insufficient attention to the victims and their families.”

Driven by the prophetic attitude of Jesus in the Gospel, we have heard the call of the families of the 43 young people to clarify the facts, punish those responsible and locate their children.

Because Ayotzinapa represents a “point of no return, the situation that does not end, the solidarity that unites us,” [ii] we invite you to follow the case and appreciate all the support of the Marists of Champagnat towards Mexico.

In this way, we hope to realize the dream expressed by the Second International Assembly of the Marist Mission in Nairobi (2014), that “we are recognised as PROPHETS because: we have left our comfort zones, and we are in a permanent attitude of departure to the peripheries of our world, driven to proclaim and build the Kingdom of God.”

Read the appeal (in Spanish).


[i] “Ayotzinapa Report. Research and initial conclusions of the disappearances and murders of the ‘normalistas’ in Ayotzinapa.” Interdisciplinary Group of Independent Experts:http://prensagieiayotzi.wix.com/giei-ayotzinapa#!informe-/c1exv

[ii] “A year since the disappearance of the 43 ‘normalistas,’ we continue to search for them.” Statement of relatives and people in solidarity, a year after the events in Iguala: http://redtdt.org.mx/?p=4433

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