Clashes in Mexico over 43 missing students case; 'Israel' implicated
The Mexican government is urging "Israel" to deport the former top investigator in the case of one of the worst human rights tragedies in the country.
During a demonstration on Friday, Mexican security forces clashed with demonstrators protesting against the disappearance of 43 students in 2014 at a military base in Mexico City.
In an attempt for the protesters to enter Military Camp No. 1 in Mexico City on the day marking the eighth anniversary of the disappearance, authorities fired back with water cannons, and according to Mexico City officials, around 40 law enforcement officers were injured in the process. This comes a day after protesters gathered outside the attorney general's office demanding justice for the students' disappearance, which left another dozen law enforcement officials wounded.
A few days earlier on Wednesday, relatives of the students rallied outside "Israel's" embassy, urging for the extradition of former top investigator Tomas Zeron who is wanted on a charge of the country's worst human rights tragedies - when 43 teaching students from Ayotzinapa traveled to the nearby town of Iguala to protest discriminatory hiring practices against teachers before they went missing.
Zeron, one of the contributors to the official version of the case presented in 2015 dubbed “Historical Truth”, which was rejected by the victims’ relatives and independent experts, is reportedly said to be in "Israel" for the past two years.
Meliton Ortega, a representative of the students’ families commented, “Israel is protecting Tomas Zeron, a human rights violator who tortured those he detained at the time to build the ‘historical truth'.” Following the implication of "Israel", the Israeli Ambassador to Mexico Zvi Tal criticized the demonstrators’ actions.
“It is clear to us that the violence displayed during the demonstration, where they left the walls of our headquarters painted with offensive graffiti – here is written ‘Death to "Israel"’ – has no relation to the Ayotzinapa case,” he claimed in a video address in front of the embassy.
It is worth noting that Mexico has repeatedly asked "Israel" to hand over Zeron, but it has been to no avail and no action has been taken.
Investigators in the case claim the students were detained by corrupt police and transferred to a drug cartel that mistook them for being members of a rival gang, however that allegation remains disputed. Just last month, a truth commission assigned by the government to look into the 2014 cold case branded it as a "state crime" with agents of various institutions involved, adding that "clear responsibility" fell upon military personnel directly or through negligence.
More than 80 suspects, including military personnel, police officers, and cartel members have had arrest warrants issued for them, and the former attorney general Jesus Murillo Karam who steered a controversial investigation regarding the students' fates, was detained last month on charges of forced disappearance, torture, and obstruction of justice.