Two investigations warn about the shortcomings of the country’s judicial system and the rise of extreme violence and “atrocities” by organized crime groups.
The corpses of three people, dismembered and burned, were found in bags in Abasolo, in the state of Guanajuato, on Sept. 2. Three days later, a trans woman was murdered in the same state, and the body of a man, burned and tortured, was found hanging from a tree in Coacalco state. On Sept. 7, more than 300 migrants who had been kidnapped were rescued in Aguascalientes, and on Sept. 19, an entire family in Chihuahua was killed and an explosive package in Guanajuato caused the deaths of two men.
The list of bloody events seems endless, but it’s only a sample of the 438 acts of extreme violence that the Mexican nongovernmental organization Causa en Común registered in September, the deadliest month this year.
Researchers estimate that the rise in extreme violence has left 6,314 people injured or dead in the first seven months of 2021.
The group said in its new report on Atrocities Registered in the Media that there have been at least 800 cases of torture this year, in addition to 640 incidents of dismemberment, mutilations and destruction of corpses, the discoveries of 502 clandestine graves, 418 massacres and 341 murders of women that were perpetrated with extreme cruelty.
“It seems very serious to us, because it is not only terrible that people are murdered in Mexico, but how they are murdered,” said Luis Sánchez Díaz, a researcher at Causa en Común, which defends rights and freedoms. “This type of news is not just another figure, and it is very unfortunate that we are beginning to normalize this type of violence.”
Every month, the group counts the “atrocities” recorded in the media, defined as events in which there is “intentional use of physical force to cause death, laceration or extreme mistreatment.”
The organization warned that it bases its numbers only on journalists’ reports, so “there will be an undetermined number of atrocities that were not registered.”
Sánchez Díaz said: “We see that the country is becoming more militarized with the actions of the National Guard, [yet] there is an increase in violence. It is absurd to think that the country is becoming more peaceful when, on average, 97 people are murdered every day.”
National Defense Secretary Luis Cresencio Sandoval has said recently that the army has deployed 28,395 troops — among them 6,244 on the southern border and 7,419 on the northern border with the U.S.
“Keeping the military in the streets and not fighting corruption affects everything,” Guadalupe Correa-Cabrera, a specialist in criminal organizations at George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia, told Noticias Telemundo. She wasn’t involved in the Causa en Común investigation.
While violence has exploded in the country as the justice system has deteriorated, suffering from “many limitations,” President Andrés Manuel López Obrador’s administration inherited the effects of former President Felipe Calderón’s war against drugs, Correa-Cabrera said.
“Atrocities such as extortion, kidnapping, torture and murder occur throughout the country, but nothing happens. However, it is not something new, because this was seen in previous governments. It is enough to look at past figures to understand that it is an enormous challenge,” she said.
Source: El Universal