Three years ago from Tuesday, 43 male college students disappeared from Ayotzinapa, Mexico, in a still-unsolved case that has brought international scrutiny to the human rights crisis in Mexico.
Mexican authorities claimed that the students, from the Raúl Isidro Burgos Normal School, had been stopped by the municipal Iguala police on their way to a march in Mexico City, handed off to a drug cartel, incinerated and dumped into the San Juan River. The government’s investigation, which they supported only with internally collected evidence and confessions, was widely protested by the public, and a six-month external investigation later found evidence that refuted the government’s claims.
Tuesday’s Ayotzinapa commemoration was split into three parts, beginning with a morning protest at the Mexican Consulate in downtown San Francisco followed by afternoon speeches by James Cavallaro, a Stanford University law professor and a commissioner of the external expert group that was involved in investigating the case, and Roxanna Altholz, a Berkeley law professor. The events concluded with remarks from Omar García, a survivor of the Ayotzinapa disappearances.
According to Cavallaro, the Ayotzinapa case reveals the “ugly elements” of corruption in Mexico. Cavallaro also provided evidence countering the explanations that the Mexican government had provided.
During the question and answer session, Cavallaro criticized the notion that the United State could establish an international court that could “rain justice from above,” adding that enforcing international policy also requires community pressure and media attention.Read More