May 25, 2019
Latest News

Mexican gov't spied on legendary Spanish director Luis Buñuel

Mexico City, Mar 14 (epa-efe).- Spanish filmmaker Luis Buñuel, along with many other famous artists, was closely watched by the Mexican security service, who followed his every step from the time he entered the country to the time he left, documents from the National General Archives (AGN) show.

The information compiled by Mexican spies includes, for example, the fact that on March 13, 1956, Buñuel participated in a film roundtable in the Mexican capital.

Buñuel - whose film "Los Olvidados" (1950) about poverty in Mexico garnered ill will in the country's circles of power - was a speaker at the roundtable held in a university facility, said "Agent 69" in his report to the defunct Federal Security Administration (DFS).

A sanitized version of the close surveillance of - or espionage perpetrated against - Buñuel between 1954 and 1975 is available in a six-page AGN document, although it no longer contains "sensitive details."

The importance given to the Spanish filmmaker by Mexican spies is clearly documented in the Oct. 9, 1956, notes by Arturo Durazo Moreno, the feared leader of the DFS group who became Mexico City police chief in 1982.

"Buñuel, who lives on Felix Cuevas Street in Mexico City, will board the KLM plane that arrived yesterday from Amsterdam," says the report, which includes the names and addresses of other travelers, including some of French origin.

On July 2, 1959, Buñuel was at the Universidad Obrera, an institution linked to Mexican Socialist leader Vicente Lombardo Toledano, to attend the inauguration of a student fraternity house and see a painting exhibition, the agent on duty reported.

His arrival in Mexico on an Air France flight on Feb. 22, 1964, and his attendance on Aug. 29, 1975, at the inauguration of the Cinematographic Training Center, of which he was president, is included in the filmmaker's file.

Along with Buñuel, the entire Mexican intellectual and celebrity elite was under the DFS microscope on an ongoing basis.

The DFS - a secretive espionage agency - was created in 1947 and dismantled in 1985 after acts of corruption and links to drug traffickers were revealed.

Mexican actress Silvia Pinal, star of Buñuel's film "Viridiana" (1961), and comedian Mario Moreno "Cantinflas," a key figure in the founding of the National Actors Association (ANDA), were also under intensive surveillance by Mexican espionage services.

Neither intellectuals nor writers were able to escape the scrutiny of the DFS, and Mexican Nobel Laureate Octavio Paz (1990), Carlos Fuentes, Carlos Monsivais, Jose Revueltas - who served time in the Islas Marias penal colony - Efrain Huerta and Diego Rivera are all mentioned in Buñuel's file.

But the eavesdropping did not end there and also was directed at international "targets" such as Fidel Castro, Ernesto "Che" Guevara and Camilo Cienfuegos during the time when those revolutionaries were in Mexico preparing to mount the Cuban Revolution.

US President John F. Kennedy and his alleged assassin Lee Harvey Oswald, Queen Elizabeth II of England and US Secretary of State Henry Kissinger also have files in the Mexican security archives.

The 60,000 confidential files, made public a couple of years ago, are stored in 7,314 boxes in the custody of the AGN, the Mexican spy agency that operated from 1920-2019.

Although the majority of the files were made public in 2002 via an executive order signed by then-President Vicente Fox, it was President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador who recently ordered the removal of all restrictions so that the press can examine and publish the documents.

The political espionage efforts got started under the governments emerging from the 1910-1921 Mexican Revolution, although it was President Miguel Aleman (1946-1952) who created the DFS.

During the 1985 crisis involving the murder of US Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) agent Enrique Camarena, the DFS was disbanded when it was discovered that drug capos were being protected by the agency.

The National Security and Investigations Center (Cisen) was created after that, although Lopez Obrador ordered it closed after taking office last Dec. 1.

In 1985, the AGN received 3,091 boxes with files prepared by the Office of Political and Social Research and the DFS during the period from 1920 to 1975 and in 2002, 4,223 boxes with 58,302 records from the Cisen for the period 1947-1985 were added.

By Jose Antonio Torres

News history
California calls on goats to prevent wildfires

By Marc Arcas

French police search for suspect after blast in Lyon

Paris, May 24 (efe-epa).- Police in the eastern French city are searching for a man on a bicycle after at least eight people were hurt when an explosive...

UK PM Theresa May to stand down on June 7

London, May 24 (efe-epa).- The United Kingdom's prime minister Theresa May said Friday she will stand down on June 7.

Senior cleric among three killed in Kabul mosque explosion

Kabul, May 24 (efe-epa).- A bomb blast inside a mosque in the Afghan capital on Friday killed three people, including a prominent religious scholar who was...

Spanish parliament suspends jailed Catalan politicians from role as MPs

Madrid, May 24 (efe-epa).- Spain's parliament on Friday suspended four Catalan politicians currently on trial at the Supreme Court for their alleged...

Defeated presidential candidate in Indonesia to challenge poll result

Jakarta, May 24 (efe-epa).- The defeated presidential candidate in the April elections in Indonesia was on Friday set to challenge the poll result before...

Filipino natives forced out of their ancestral lands by Chinese capital

By Sara Gómez Armas

Indian forces impose curfew after killing al-Qaeda commander in Kashmir

Srinagar, India, May 24 (efe-epa).- Authorities on Friday imposed a curfew in parts of India-administered Kashmir, a day after security forces said they had...

Trump to visit Japan to coordinate action on North Korea

Tokyo, May 24 (efe-epa).- The United States president will begin his visit to Japan on May 25 to coordinate action on North Korea and strengthen ties with...

Thailand opens new parliament with opposition leader suspended

Bangkok, May 24 (efe-epa).- Thailand's Parliament will open its first session in five years on Friday with one of the leading opposition figures suspended...

Landslide victory for Indian PM Narendra Modi confirmed

New Delhi, May 24 (efe-epa).- India's prime minister Narendra Modi of the Bharatiya Janata Party on Friday was confirmed as the winner of general elections...

US hospital ship to assist 11 countries in response to Venezuelan crisis

Miami, USA, May 23 (efe-epa).- A United States Navy hospital ship will provide medical assistance to 11 Latin American and Caribbean countries in response...

Trump pledges another $16 bn for farmers hurt by Chinese tariffs

Washington, May 23 (efe-epa).- President Donald Trump on Thursday approved a second aid package for US farmers, this one for $16 billion, with the aim of...

US charges Julian Assange with espionage

Washington, May 23 (efe-epa).- The US Department of Justice announced Thursday a new indictment of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange that includes an...

China, Brazil agree to boost trade, cooperation

Beijing, May 23 (efe-epa).- The vice presidents of China and Brazil presided here Thursday over the fifth gathering of the Sino-Brazilian High-Level...

Pelosi stays firm vs. Trump on cover-up claim

By Alex Segura Lozano

Tornadoes kill at least 3 in Missouri

Washington, May 23 (efe-epa).- At least three people were killed by tornadoes in the Midwestern US state of Missouri, Gov. Mike Parson said Thursday.

What will happen to Cuba's anti-imperialist grandstand at US Embassy?

By Lorena Canto

India decides to ride Modi wave for another 5 years

By Shubhomoy Chatterjee

Costa Rican president rejects military option in Venezuela, Nicaragua

Douglas Marin

In victory speech, Modi dedicates landmark win to people of India

New Delhi, May 23 (efe-epa).- The Indian prime minister on Thursday dedicated his landmark electoral victory to the people of India whom he said had reposed...

Marawi still healing amid the rubble two years after militant siege

By Sara Gómez Armas

PSG president placed under investigation for alleged corruption

Paris, May 23 (efe-epa).- The president of French soccer champions Paris Saint-Germain, Nasser Al-Khelaifi, is under investigation on suspicion of...

India’s Modi secures resounding poll victory riding high on Hindutva

By Sarwar Kashani,

I agree Welcome to We use cookies to improve your online experience. Find out more.