Jan 23, 2012

Human Rights Violations: Violence has increased horribly in Mexico, says Human Rights Watch

Milenio: "The organization Human Rights Watch reported that security forces in Mexico have committed human rights violations and that the soldiers enjoy impunity in these cases. This was stated during the presentation of its world report in Cairo.

The communications director for HRW, Emma Daly, said President Felipe Calderon is using the military to fight drug traffickers and organized crime, but the military are not well trained to carry out policing and go unpunished when there are abuses. "We have evidence that violence has increased in Mexico horribly in recent years and that there is no system for judging the military so that there is justice," Daly said at the headquarters of the Union of Journalists of the Egyptian capital.

In her opinion, "there is total impunity for the military in Mexico," who are never prosecuted within the military justice system, which encourages the continuation of "the abuse because there is no way to stop it."

According to the NGO report, the efforts of the authorities to combat organized crime have led to a significant rise in killings, torture and other abuses by security forces, which only make the "climate of disorder and fear worse in some areas of the country." Among the violations of human rights by the Armed Forces are murder, torture and forced disappearances.

A demonstration that soldiers who have committed human rights violations against civilians are never brought to justice is, according to HRW, that the military prosecutor's office opened over 3,600 investigations of cases between 2007 and June 2011 and only 15 soldiers were convicted in that period.

The main victims of these attacks are journalists, human rights defenders and migrants. Regarding journalists, the report stresses that this group is "more and more often targeted for violence and intimidation" and records that between 2000 and September 2011, 74 journalists were killed, eight of them last year. In addition, HRW notes that hundreds of thousands of migrants who cross Mexico each year suffer serious abuses, including sexual and physical assault.

The document also emphasizes that the Mexican judicial system "fails to do justice to these victims of violent crimes or violations of human rights." One of the major violations, according to the report, is the torture of detainees, a problem that is perpetuated because some judges accept confessions extracted under pressure.

The organization also criticized the laws of the country which, in its opinion, do not adequately protect women and girls from domestic violence and sexual abuse." Spanish original

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