Tags: Mexico | violence | dead | students

Mexico: Investigation Shows That All 43 Students Are Dead

Tuesday, 27 January 2015 09:20 PM

Investigators are now certain that 43 college students missing since September were killed and incinerated after they were seized by police in southern Guerrero state, the Mexican attorney general said Tuesday.

It was the first time Jesus Murillo Karam said definitely that all were dead, even though Mexican authorities have DNA identification for only one student and a declaration from a laboratory in Innsbruck, Austria, that it appears impossible to identify the others.

The attorney general cited confessions and forensic evidence from an area near a garbage dump where the Sept. 26 crime occurred that showed the fuel and temperature of the fire were sufficient to turn 43 bodies into ashes.

"The evidence allows us to determine that the students were kidnapped, killed, burned and thrown into the river," Murillo Karam said in a press conference that included a video reconstruction of the mass slaying and of the investigation into the case.

He added that "there is not a single shred of evidence that the army intervened ... not a single shred of evidence of the participation of the army," as relatives of the victims have claimed.

Murillo Karam's explanation seemed unlikely to quell the controversy and doubts about the case, in which the federal government has been criticized for acting slowly and callously. Thousands of people demonstrated in Mexico City Monday night, demanding the students be returned alive.

"They pretty much gave the same story as they had given two months ago. There are not many additional details," said analyst Alejandro Hope. "They are searching for closure but I'm not sure they're going to get it."

The attorney general has come under attack from many quarters, including the students' relatives and fire experts, who say the government's version of what happened is implausible. Family members are still searching in hopes of finding the students alive.

The Argentine Forensic Anthropologists, an independent team hired by parents to work with federal investigators, told The Associated Press on Sunday that there is still not "sufficient evidence" to link the charred remains found by authorities in a river in the town of Cocula to what happened at the garbage dump.

Valentin Cornelio Gonzalez, 30, brother-in-law of missing student Abel Garcia Hernandez, said the shifting theories of what happened to the students have left him and other family members not believing anything that officials say.

"On a personal level, it makes me mad because this is what they've always done," he said of Tuesday's announcement. "There's no chance that the parents are going to believe the PGR (saying) that they're dead. ... They are going to look for them alive."

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Investigators are now certain that 43 college students missing since September were killed and incinerated after they were seized by police in southern Guerrero state, the Mexican attorney general said Tuesday.It was the first time Jesus Murillo Karam said definitely that...
Mexico, violence, dead, students
436
2015-20-27
Tuesday, 27 January 2015 09:20 PM
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