Civil rights groups bring forward proposals for improved protections across country

A number of Mexican human rights organisations have brought forward new policy proposals aimed at providing justice, stopping impunity and offering repatriation for victims.

The proposals follow on from agreements made with President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador last September, when he committed to working with civil groups to bring new protections into fruition.

According to Animal Politico, these plans will form part of the National Plan for Human Rights, which will be ready in six months.  

Five areas of focus form part of the overall proposition, as well as the creation of a National Truth Commission, and there will be a new repatriation model, an international mechanism against impunity and increased protection methods for victims and witnesses.

Among the plans, the activists have also explained that international support is necessary to fight  corruption and provide authorities with the correct training.

It is no secret that many Mexico’s human rights protections are not as effective as they need to be. According to the UN Human Rights Watch, in 2013 Mexican authorities accepted a number of recommendations in an attempt to curtail torture and forced disappearances as well as extrajudicial executions. It led to the implementation of new laws across the country against torture, and a heightened awareness that the world was watching. However, in 2018 the UN ruled that little had been done and failures within the country’s systems remained rife.  

In 2018 the country broke its own record for murder rates, tallying a total of 15,973 in the first six months of the year alone, reported The Guardian. Paving its way to be crowned with the grizzly title of the deadliest year in the country since 1997, the country’s staggering crime levels are also combined with heightened organised crime, and increased amounts of kidnappings and femicide as splinter cartel groups look to other means to make quick money.    

To further add fuel to the fire, the 2014 disappearance of 43 students in Guerrero, known as the Ayotzinapa case, continues to linger in the minds of Mexican civilians. In Mexico City, a permanent memorial along the heart of the city’s main promenade continues to remind citizens that the case cannot be forgotten. Just a few months ago, Amnesty International called on Mexican authorities to open a special investigation into the ongoing case.

Since AMLO came to power, part of his presidency has since been taken over by the diversion of fuel pumps, which have led to fuel shortages across the country. It marks some of the first attempts by the president to come down on cartel groups and thieves who profit from fuel theft, whilst contributing to higher crime rates and violence. Attempts to create a National Guard is another attempt, which is hoped to reduce the skyrocketing levels of violence that his presidential predecessor left.

“Without truth, justice and integral reparation and guarantees of non-repetition, the fourth transformation will not be possible,” Mariclaire Acosta, president of the Citizen Participation Committee of the National Anticorruption System said during a presentation last year.  

Today an open forum at the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM) also addressed the role of a Citizen Participation Committee in the fight against corruption in the country, revealing the many avenues through which groups are attempting to bring change to the country.

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