They attribute disappearances to officials and crime

Despite the official discourse that points to organized crime as the main perpetrator of disappearances in Mexico, public servants, from the three levels of government, have become the other factor responsible, directly or indirectly, for the cases that continue to arise, warned the UN Committee on Enforced Disappearances (CED).

In the report of the final findings of its visit to Mexico in November 2021, the CED asserted that “the prevailing discourse in official circles tends to deny or dilute the responsibility of the State party, alleging that the majority of disappearances are perpetrated by private individuals, mainly linked to organized crime.

“The Committee has received many other allegations that insist on the direct or indirect responsibility of the State, taking into account the patterns of disappearances that occur in the country.

“In some cases, they refer to the direct involvement of public servants, based on compelling evidence such as photos, testimonies or videos. In others, to the inaction of the authorities and officials in the face of the existence of known risks,” the UN experts maintained.

They added, in turn, that organized crime has become a central perpetrator of disappearances, with various forms of collusion and varying degrees of participation, acquiescence or omission of public servants.

In this context, the CED recalled that international treaties hold that the State will also be responsible for forced disappearances committed by public servants, as well as when they are committed by criminal organizations, acting with the authorization, support or acquiescence of the State. Condition.

The CED reiterated that disappearances in Mexico are a generalized situation in which “almost absolute impunity” prevails, since only between 2 and 6% of the cases had been prosecuted, while only 36 sentences were registered for the disappearance of persons in the country.

For this reason, he called on the federal government to recognize and take into consideration the criteria of responsibility of public servants and eradicate the structural causes of impunity.

drug war

The Committee highlighted that, as of November 26, there were 95,121 people registered as missing; 112 cases were presented during his visit from November 15 to 26, 2021.

The data, indicated the CED, show the close relationship between the increase in disappearances and the beginning of the so-called war against drug trafficking, which was declared during the six-year term of Felipe Calderón (2006-2012).

It was found that despite the fact that most of the disappearances involve men between the ages of 15 and 40, the official figures show a notable increase in the disappearance of boys and girls over the age of 12, as well as of adolescents and women, a trend which worsened in the context of the Covid-19 pandemic.

“These cases would correspond to disappearances linked to the abduction of boys and girls (within or outside the family sphere), to disappearances as a means to hide sexual violence and femicide, to recruitment and reprisals. The victims and the authorities also reported disappearances that were for the purpose of trafficking and sexual exploitation,” the experts found.

Meanwhile, the Committee expressed great concern about the specific victimization of women who, in most cases, and with their own means, face the search for their loved ones, while suffering the serious social and economic effects of the disappearances and, in addition, in many cases they are victims of violence, persecution, stigmatization, extortion and reprisals.

The CED also called for abandoning the approach of militarizing public security due to the risk it implies in terms of human rights.

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