Americas Program | Outcome of Mexican Dirty War Investigations
WHAT'S NEW AT THE AMERICAS PROGRAM
April 11, 2003
New from the IRC's Americas Program:
Payoff Pending for Decades of Human Rights Organizing
Outcome of Mexican Dirty War Investigations Up In Air
By Kent Paterson
Then-candidate Vicente Fox promised a truth commission to clear the historical record of past human rights abuses ranging from the 1968 massacre of students in Mexico City's Tlatelolco Square to the 1995 Aguas Blancas slaughter of peasants in Guerrero state. Once in office, what Fox delivered was very different: a special prosecutor to investigate the culprits of those and other crimes, plus a military tribunal to try two Mexican generals on homicide charges.
Human rights advocates, who have been pushing for decades to get to the bottom of the truth in these and other cases, voice a mixture of hope and doubt on the possibilities of attaining justice with the Fox administration's approach. Many groups still demand that the government establish a truth commission like the one in South Africa. But without sustained pressure from a united front, it's unlikely that the Fox administration will shift its human rights policy from a special prosecutor to a truth commission.
Kent Paterson is a freelance journalist based in Albuquerque and a frequent contributor to the Americas Program.
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