Experts to end mission on Mexico students’ disappearance

A pedestrian looks at placards with portraits of some of the 43 missing students from the Ayotzinapa teachers' school placed in front of the General Prosecutor of the Republic (PGR) building in Mexico City on April 14, 2016
AFP

Washington (AFP) – The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights said Friday it will terminate a mission investigating the disappearance of 43 students in Mexico after the government failed to extend its mandate in the country.

James Cavallaro, chairman of the IACHR, said there was no path forward without the consent of the Mexican government, calling its decision “deeply regrettable.”

The independent experts, who have been working on the highly emotive case since March last year, will end their mission on April 30, per the terms of their mandate.

The rights commission, part of the Organization of American States, has repeatedly called on Mexico to review its refusal to allow the mission to continue.

Police in the southern Mexican city of Iguala attacked students from a teacher college on September 26, 2014, after the students hijacked buses they intended to use for a protest.

The Mexican authorities say that same night, police officers handed the students to the Guerreros Unidos drug cartel, which killed them, incinerated their bodies at a garbage dump and tossed the remains in a nearby river.

The IACHR experts and families reject that account, however.

Mexico is carrying out its own, much-criticized investigation into the students’ disappearance.

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