Experts assured that López Obrador “does not want to acknowledge that there is a very big problem of “narco politics” that is advancing with gigantic steps.”
As Mexico approaches June 6, the day of the midterm elections, the number of political murders has been increasing, warned the British newspaper Financial Times, as 85 politicians have been victims of homicide in the country since the electoral process began in September 2020.
This figure from Etellekt Consultores includes the 32 applicants killed before election day began. In other words, it is “the bloodiest election on record, after the 2018 presidential vote,” journalist Jude Webber noted.
Most of the victims are attributed to organized crime and its ties to the Mexican political sphere. Although the British media stressed that the majority belonged to parties opposed to the government of Andrés Manuel López Obrador.
“Their deaths have exposed the deep-seated ties between organized crime groups and the local officials who protect them,” said the communicator.
In this sense, the director of the consultancy, Rubén Salazar, said that when someone confronts these groups, they “harass or kill you”, which implies that none of the candidates can run for public office without having the approval from the mayor or local crime boss.
This dark picture is in direct conflict with President López Obrador’s strategy based on “hugs, not bullets,” Webber said. In addition to being part of a series of security challenges and “his repeated promises to achieve peace in a country where violence has exploded for 15 years and there are almost 100 murders a day.”
The harassment of the electoral sector by criminals is only one of the faces of violence in the country, which increased significantly during the administration of Felipe Calderón in 2006. To date, the panorama has not had a substantial change, since two thirds of the Mexicans surveyed by El Financiero pointed to poor handling of the problem by the current administration.
Financial Times ensures that the perception of Mexicans is due to the increase in homicides, which has fallen 4% compared to the previous year. However, in 2019 the country surpassed a historical record by registering 34,682 homicides and 970 femicides.
Jude Webber interviewed former security official Ricardo Márquez Blas, who repeatedly pointed out that the number of homicides and femicides committed during the López Obrador’s presidency exceeded 3,000 per month, a smaller figure compared to the previous administration of Enrique Peña Nieto.
On the other hand, the former US ambassador to Mexico, Christopher Landau, also said that the president had a “laissez-faire” attitude towards organized crime: “He sees the cartels. . . like his Vietnam, which has been for some of his predecessors, and I think so. . . He sees that as a distraction to focus on his agenda, “Landau sentenced during a conference.
Experts consulted by the Financial Times have referred that the polarized climate is increased by the press conferences of López Obrador, “where he launches a barrage of criticism against his political opponents, the press, and the electoral authorities”
However, for the director of Etellekt Consultores, the panorama in Mexico shows how López Obrador “does not want to recognize that there is a very big problem of “narco politics” that is advancing with giant steps”. Meanwhile, candidates for public office will have to remain vigilant to avoid being part of the chilling statistic of electoral murders.