August 20, 2019
Latest News

Mexican authorities find 222 clandestine graves, 337 bodies in 5 months

Mexico City, May 14 (efe-epa).- Reused graves and an increasingly more elaborate modus operandi are among the characteristics of the 222 clandestine graves containing 337 bodies found in Mexico during the last six months, the federal government said Tuesday.

"From Dec. 1 to May 13, we've found 81 areas with 222 clandestine graves and 337 bodies," Alejandro Encinas, the deputy secretary of Human Rights, Population and Migration, said at a press conference in the National Palace.

While those numbers are chilling, Encinas said that previous administrations "hid or minimized" the actual figures, often by lumping them in with homicide statistics.

President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador's government will issue reports every two weeks on the number of graves and bodies discovered, Encinas said.

The data compiled since Lopez Obrador took office last December show that the largest concentrations of burial sites and bodies are in the states of Colima, Tabasco, Sonora, Zacatecas, Guerrero, Jalisco and Veracruz.

Encinas stressed that the situation is constantly evolving.

"The tasks of exhumation are in process," he said.

The National Graves Registry is based on information from the National Search Commission, the federal Attorney General's Office and state prosecutors, as well as on input from victims' families.

And as disturbing as the numbers for the last six months are, they represent only the tip of the iceberg.

In a report issued Monday, Mexico's independent National Commission on Human Rights said that 855 graves and 1,548 bodies were found between 2007 and 2016.

Quinto Elemento Lab, an organization devoted to investigative reporting, put the number of clandestine graves detected in the decade 2006-2016 at 2,000.

The government said in February that Mexico had a total of 40,000 unsolved missing-persons cases and 26,000 unidentified bodies lying in morgues across the country.

"We will go immediately to all those places where we receive anonymous or open accusations, or where we have indications that the possibility of a (clandestine) grave exists," Encinas said.

He said that the dimensions of the phenomenon "is shown not only in the large number of graves found, but also in the practices (of the criminals)."

The deputy secretary pointed to a mass grave found in the western state of Nayarit that was 4m (13ft) deep and could only be reached with the help of earth-moving machinery.

Investigations in Iguala, Guerrero - notorious for the 2014 abduction and murder of 43 students - uncovered "prefabricated graves" ready to receive bodies, Encinas said.

He said that authorities have also detected instances where clandestine graves were "recycled," with criminals dumping fresh bodies into pits from which human remains were previously exhumed.

Encinas concluded by pledging to obtain assistance from international organizations in improving Mexico's search for missing people and its support for victims' families.

The government took steps in March to reorganize the approach to the problem, resurrecting one federal commission and creating a new one alongside it.

The tragedy of the disappeared "is the legacy of a wrong and failed policy to confront the violence in the country," Lopez Obrador said Tuesday.

News history
El Salvador woman pardoned after manslaughter conviction for abortion

Ciudad Delgado, El Salvador, Aug 19 (efe-epa).- A court in El Salvador pardoned Evelyn Hernandez, 21, this Monday of the crime of aggravated manslaughter...

Bardem: If 30 pct. of oceans not protected in 2030, damage to be irreversible

By Alvaro Celorio

DNA extracted from turtle shell products in drive to save species

Sydney, Australia, Aug 18 (efe-epa).- Scientists have extracted DNA from products made out of hawksbill turtle shells in a bid to save a species that is...

FAO: 39 million people suffer from hunger in Latin America

Montevideo, Aug 17 (efe-epa).- An increase in the number of people suffering from hunger in Latin America and the Caribbean, now totaling 39 million, is a...

European Commission president cuts Austria vacation short for urgent surgery

Brussels, Aug 17 (efe-epa).- The president of the European Commission, Jean-Claude Juncker, has had to cut his vacation in Austria short for medical...

Death toll in dengue outbreak hits 40 in Bangladesh

Dhaka, Aug 17 (efe-epa).- At least 40 people have died from dengue in Bangladesh, with over 50,000 cases reported throughout the country since January,...

Dirt-floor shacks a perpetual symbol of Argentina's gaping social divide

By Tono Gil

UNICEF: Rohingya child refugees despair over lack of access to education

Dhaka, Aug 16 (efe-epa) - Lack of access to formal education is leading to frustration and despair among young Rohingya refugees in southeastern Bangladesh,...

Pacific Islands Forum ends with lukewarm declaration against climate change

Sydney, Australia, Aug 16 (efe-epa).- The Pacific Islands Forum ended on Thursday night in Funafuti, the capital of island nation Tuvalu, without a...

Salvadoran woman hopeful of acquittal in retrial for stillbirth

Ciudad Delgado, El Salvador, Aug 15 (efe-epa).- A Salvadoran woman sentenced to 30 years in prison after a stillborn delivery was back in court here...

Scientists detect microplastic particles in the snow

Berlin, Aug 15 (efe-epa).- A team of German and Swiss scientists have detected the presence of microplastic particles in the snow of the Arctic and the Alps...

Nora Quoirin died of internal bleeding from stress or lack of food: police

Bangkok Desk, Aug 15 (efe-epa).- The London schoolgirl found dead in a Malaysian jungle two days ago died from internal bleeding likely caused by lack of...

Pell's appeal against child sexual abuse convictions to be decided on Aug. 21

Sydney, Australia, Aug 15 (efe-epa).- An Australian cardinal convicted to six years in prison for abusing two boys in the 1990s will find out the fate of...

Pell's appeal against child sexual abuse convictions to be decided on Aug. 21

Sydney, Australia, Aug 15 (efe-epa).- An Australian cardinal convicted to six years in prison for abusing two boys in the 1990s will find out the fate of...

More than 250 lawsuits vs. Catholic Church filed over sex abuse in New York

New York, Aug 14 (efe-epa).- A New York law office on Wednesday filed more than 250 lawsuits over sexual abuse of minors against the Catholic Church with...

Brazilian women challenge Bolsonaro with massive protest

Eduardo Davis

Antarctic Commission studies creation of large marine protected areas

By Daniela Brik.

Indigenous and farm women demand gender equality in Brazil

Brasilia, Aug 13 (efe-epa).- Groups of indigenous and farm women were received this Tuesday by the Brazilian legislature, where both repeated their...

Australia pledges funds to fight climate change's effects on Pacific nations

Sydney, Australia, Aug 13 (efe-epa).- The Australian government on Tuesday announced the creation of a fund to finance projects that will help Pacific...

Australia announces investment in recycling to avoid exporting waste

Sydney, Australia, Aug 13 (efe-epa).- The Australian government on Tuesday announced a plan to encourage the recycling of plastic waste following...

Expansion of quay on Mexican island of Cozumel worries environmentalists

By Ricardo Hernandez

Reward offered in search for teenage girl missing in Malaysia

Bangkok, Aug 12 (efe-epa).- The parents of a 15-year-old girl who went missing in a jungle region in Malaysia have offered a reward for information on where...

Singapore bans ivory trade after seizing 9 tonnes of elephant tusks

Bangkok Desk, Aug 12 (efe-epa).- Singapore authorities on Monday announced a total ban on the domestic trade in ivory, weeks after seizing almost nine...

Ebola as seen through the eyes of children in DR Congo

By Patricia Martínez

I agree Welcome to news4europe.eu. We use cookies to improve your online experience. Find out more.