Report says Mexico state officials ignored massacre

10/9/16 The Washington Post


 Mexican drug gang bosses furious at suspected turncoats sent commandos aided by local police to seize dozens — perhaps hundreds — of people, murder them and dispose of their bodies in a town near the Texas border, yet state and federal officials ignored the massacre for years, according to a government-backed report released Sunday.

The long delay in the investigation makes it impossible to determine just how many people were killed in the town of Allende in 2011, according to the report sponsored by the federal Executive Commission for Attention to Victims. The Coahuila state file lists 42 missing people related to the case. But a Zeta drug gang member told a U.S. court in 2013 that 300 died, though it was not clear if all the deaths occurred in the same incident.

A witness testified that many of the bodies of victims were incinerated to the point of making identification of remains almost impossible. The report written by Sergio Aguayo, a human rights activist and academic at the elite College of Mexico, is based on testimony gathered by Mexican prosecutors, government and independent human rights organizations, as well as U.S. records.

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Mexico’s former president doesn’t want to talk about the bloody drug war he helped start

4/10/16 Business Insider


Former Mexican President Felipe Calderon left office almost four years ago, but during his six-year term he presided over one of the most violent periods in modern Mexican history. Taking office in 2006, Calderon initiated a military-backed crackdown on organized crime that led to peaks in violence between 2010 and 2012. Calderon left office in 2012, and homicide rates have fallen and risen again under his successor, Enrique Peña Nieto.
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‘Narcos alone rule’: Mexico shaken after three priests killed within a week

09/29/2016 The Guardian 

The Catholic priest José Alfredo López Guillén was seized from his parish residence in rural Michoacán, where he served a congregation of corn farmers and ranchers. The next day, the wreckage of his Volkswagen Jetta was discovered on the outskirts of the town of Quiroga, 71 miles (115km) from where it had been stolen.

The priest’s body was discovered on Sunday on a lonely stretch of road, nearly a week after his abduction. He had been shot five times in the stomach.

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‘Mexico is one big cemetery.’ The search for the secret graves for the disappeared

09/29/2016 Los Angeles Times 

Cross They gather shortly after daybreak outside a mini-market, the tropical heat thickening, the dawn haze in lethargic retreat. They hug and catch up, purchase water and snacks for the upcoming ordeal. New volunteers are welcomed.

“You’re not alone,” Lucia Diaz, a leader of the group, assures a young woman on her inaugural outing. “We are all sharing in this together.”

They lug basics: shovels, machetes, hammers, a metal rod to test the earth, a portable canopy to block the broiling sun. Diaz and about 15 others head off in several pickups, passing a police guard and arriving at a mosquito-infested field where everyone sprays on repellent and dons masks and gloves for the grisly task ahead.

Their objective: human remains, long buried, now emerging from the earth, providing clues to unspeakable fates.

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Homicides in Mexico have reached a grisly milestone

08/28/16 Business Insider

gun - crime sceneViolence in Mexico has been on the rise in recent months, as fragmented criminal organizations clash around the country, competing with Mexican authorities and each other for control of illegal enterprises.

Data released by the Mexican government reveal that homicides, perhaps the most visible aspect of the country’s violence, reached an ugly milestone in July.

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Drug-Kingpin Takedowns Spur Turf Wars as Murders Surge in Mexico

08/17/16 Bloomberg

crime and drugsThree years after Mexicans elected President Enrique Pena Nieto on a pledge of putting an end to the murder and violence gripping the nation, killings have returned to the dark days of his predecessor’s administration.

Homicides rose 15 percent to 9,400 in the first half from a year earlier, the government said in July, reaching levels of former President Felipe Calderon’s term. But drug-related killings have soared even more according to one tally: Milenio newspaper, which has tracked organized-crime deaths since 2006, reports a 33 percent surge through July.

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Life as an Entrepreneur in a Violent Mexico

08/15/16 MIT Technology Review

Alejandro Avila, the 30-year-old Mexican cofounder of Espiral, a mobile wallet service that he describes as “Square meets Stripe,” is on the edge of something big. Mexicans carry more than 100 million mobile phones and only 15 percent use credit cards, making financial tech a lucrative nascent market.

Yet Avila—whose family left Mexico in the 1990s only to return a decade later—faces a dangerous caveat to success.

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