Ayotzinapa / Follow-up Mechanism
The Government of Mexico is fully committed to clarify the events that took place in Iguala, carrying on with research, punishing those responsible and protecting the rights of victims. The investigation remains open and will do so until the last person is prosecuted.
- Precautionary measures issued by the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) are being applied. Mexico provides the Commission with implementation updates.
- The file on the case (5,000 pages) includes the report of the Interdisciplinary Group of International Experts (IGIE/GIEI) and their recommendations.
- Arrest warrants for 168 people and 128 detentions.
- 851 search operations (25 with the IGIE), 1,715 expert interventions, 1,010 statement-hearings, 98 extractions of information and 135 DNA samples taken.
- 94% of the 941 requests issued by the IGIE were effectively addressed.
Follow-up Mechanism on the Iguala Case
The Inter-American Commission issued a resolution (29/Jul/2016) to adopt a follow-up mechanism on the precautionary measures issued by the Commission in 2014 and to address the recommendations of the IGEI’s final report. Commissioner Esmeralda Arosemena de Troitiño, Country Rapporteur, coordinates the Mechanism and its team of technical advisors. They made regular visits to Mexico during 2017.
The Mexican State collaborates closely with the Commission, providing all the requested information, either through State-reports, working meetings in the framework of the Mechanism’s technical and official visits, or through public hearings.
- Mexico has shared with the Commission the progress made in the investigation, which aims at exhausting all lines of investigation (including those proposed by the IGIE).
- There has been constant progress in victim assistance. Mexico works to address relatives' concerns. The main priority is the dialogue with the students’ relatives and their representatives.
- The government of Mexico created a timetable for the near future, with a strategy that includes trials and sentences for the accused.
For the Government of Mexico, the Mechanism is and will be an essential tool.
To date, Mexico has provided financial support to ensure that the Mechanism has the necessary resources to operate.
Mexico will continue to show full openness to dialogue with the Mechanism, as well as with the students' relatives and their representatives, which is a clear example of the strong cooperation the country has with the Commission.
Mexico regrets the violent acts that took place in Nochixtlán, Oaxaca, and reaffirms its commitment with the Rule of Law, legality and the respect of human rights.
The investigations will continue to fully respect human rights, based on the principle of the presumption of innocence of all involved.
The actions of the Federal Police are in strict accordance with established protocols for the respect of human rights. They have expressed their willingness to collaborate in the investigation with the Attorney General’s Office.
On June 22th, 2016, the Ministry of the Interior established a space for dialogue with members of the teachers’ movement. The dialogue serves as an institutional channel for their demands and to defuse conflicts, especially in Oaxaca.
The Ministry of the Interior maintains a dialogue with different public institutions to guarantee assistance for the victims and their relatives, regardless of any criminal process carried out by security and justice institutions.
The National Commission on Human Rights has a permanent presence at the place of the events. The staff investigates the events by collecting testimony, inspections, and conducting medical assessments. They also assist victims and their relatives, providing medical and psychological assistance.
Several international human rights bodies, such as the UN High Commissioner and the State Human Rights Ombudsman, have closely followed the case.
On May 20th, 2016, the Court’s decision to release the three military soldiers indicted in the Tlatlaya case was due to lack of evidence to prosecute the suspects. It was adopted impartially and independently by a Mexican civil court.
The decision was guided by the principles of criminal due process of law, and in accordance with relevant international standards.
The Office of the Attorney General continued the investigation so as to provide enough evidence to duly credit the responsibility of those involved, and allow for their arrest and formal processing. Four agents of the State of Mexico Attorney General's Office who participated in the events were sentenced to three years and eight months in prison for the crime of torture.
Mexico has sent three reports to the IACHR regarding precautionary measures granted to the witnesses.
On September 17th, 2016, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights submitted the case of Mariana Selvas and others to the consideration of the Inter-American Court of Human Rights. On November 11th, 2017, the court notified Mexican authorities of its decision to formally open the case.
Mexico has publicly recognized its responsibility in these regrettable events.
The authorities investigated, punished those responsible and implemented comprehensive reparation measures in accordance with Inter-American standards.
More than 30 people have been arrested and sentenced, and there are 48 ongoing criminal proceedings.
Mexico has addressed the Commission’s recommendations and proposed a comprehensive compensation plan for the victims.
The decision issued by the Court will give legal certainty to all parties on the suitability of these measures, in accordance with Inter-American standards.
Mexico maintains a direct dialogue with the victims and their representatives, in order to agree on new actions to comply with all the recommendations issued by the Commission. Without prejudice to the proceedings before the Inter-American Court, Mexico will continue this dialogue in order to accomplish the necessary reparations.
Jyri Jaakkola and Beatriz Cariño Case
The Government of the State of Oaxaca is in charge of the investigation. However, due to the importance and relevance of the events, there is a close collaboration between local and federal authorities.
The case is not yet closed; the investigation remains open until the perpetrators are prosecuted.
Six arrest warrants have been issued against those responsible, five of them in the last two years. On August 25th, 2017, Antonio Solano Velázquez was arrested as one of those responsible for these crimes.
Federal and state authorities have met several times with representatives of the Subcommittee on Human Rights of the European Parliament and the Government of Finland, in order to know the status of the investigations and prosecute those responsible.
To date, legal proceedings are ongoing.
The Mexican government, as well as the State of Oaxaca, are committed to bring this case to justice.
Alleged espionage of journalists and human rights defenders' mobile phones
In June 2017, human rights defenders and journalists reported alleged espionage by the Mexican Government using "Pegasus" malware on their mobile phones.
Among the defenders and journalists supposedly affected are some of the lawyers investigating the disappearance of the 43 students in the Iguala case, members of the Interdisciplinary Group of Independent Experts of the Inter-American Human Rights Commission (GIEI), journalists Carmen Aristegui, Carlos Loret de Mola, Rafael Cabrera, Sebastián Barragán, Juan Pardiñas, Daniel Lizárraga and Salvador Camarena. The Special Prosecutor for Crimes against Freedom of Expression in the Office of the Attorney General, Ricardo Sánchez Pérez del Pozo, gave a press conference on alleged espionage cases to journalists and human rights defenders.
Mexico has arranged a technical support group organized with:
- The International Telecommunication Union (ITU), a specialized telecommunications organization within the United Nations.
- The Global Association of Mobile Operators (GSMA), based in London, UK.
- The School of Mechanical and Electrical Engineering of the National Polytechnic Institute (IPN in Spanish).
- The former President of the Federal Telecommunications Commission, Héctor Osuna Jaime.
- The US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) will be asked to collaborate.
- In addition, the Canadian Ministry of Justice will collaborate, through international legal assistance, with interviews with the Citizen Lab of the University of Toronto.
All companies that have sold communications intervention equipment in Mexico will be asked to testify in order to know the details of the destination of this equipment, whether to state governments, public agencies, or federal entities. All federal and state security agencies that have access to this equipment and software have been ordered not to delete any information related to the employment of the Pegasus equipment or equipment similar to it.
Those who have formally, or through the media, mentioned that their mobile equipment have been tapped must provide the equipment for forensic investigation.
Since June 24, 2017, the precautionary measures requested by the National Commission on Human Rights to the Attorney General have been complied with. Given the seriousness of the case, the Attorney General will follow several investigations in order to ensure that journalists and human rights defenders in Mexico can carry out their activities with freedom and with all the guarantees that the law grants them.