That’s the number of human rights violation complaints filed against Mexico’s military from 2006 – 2012. If that number doesn’t floor you, the next one will:
Is the number of these complaints which have led to a conviction in Mexico’s civilian courts. According to Mexico’s National Human Rights Commission (CNDH), not a single soldier or federal police officer was sanctioned for any of the human rights violations it documented in 2010 and 2011. What can you do to ensure the majority of these abuses don’t continue to go uninvestigated and unpunished?
Mexico’s new President, Enrique Peña Nieto, promised to increase legal protections for human rights, making this a key moment to press Peña Nieto to keep his promise. The White House in their announcement of President Obama’s May 2nd -4th trip to Mexico noted that the President wants to “further our engagement on the broad array of bilateral, regional and global issues that connect our two countries.” You can do your part to ensure this happens by telling your representative to sign a Dear Colleague letter that urges recently appointed Secretary of State John Kerry, to 1) make the defense of human rights a central part of our relationship with Mexico and 2) detail ways the United States can aid in strengthening Mexico’s human rights record. This Dear Colleague letter provides a strategic opportunity for Congress to weigh in with the administration regarding human rights issues in Mexico as President Obama prepares for his visit.
Urge Congress to send a strong message to Mexico before President Obama’s trip. Tell your representative to sign on to this letter now!
In the past six years over 26,000 people have disappeared in Mexico. That is 26,000 mothers, fathers, brothers, and daughters who meant the world, and still do, to their families, who are now missing. Losing a loved one is difficult enough, but to have no answers or justice for their memory is unimaginable. The CNDH identified over 2,000 cases of enforced disappearances in which there is clear evidence that federal authorities were involved; state and municipal authorities have also been implicated. Although members of Congress cannot bring back their missing family members, they can help Mexico establish a national registry and database for unidentified remains modeled after the U.S.’s National Missing and Unidentified Persons System (NamUs), a tool to help bring resolution to family members searching for loved ones.
The U.S. State Department is currently withholding $18 million in security assistance to Mexico until the U.S. identifies areas of future collaboration with the Peña Nieto government on key human rights issues. We need Secretary of State Kerry to seize this moment to raise these concerns!
Click here to read the Dear Colleague letter.