Mexico: Relatives of Disappeared Students Plan Hunger Strike

Featured Mexico: Relatives of Disappeared Students Plan Hunger Strike

The relatives demand the government to allow interrogations of the military officials allegedly involved in the disappearances

The relatives of the 43 disappeared students from the Rural School of Ayotzinapa informed on Sunday they will be starting a hunger strike at the end of the month, until the first anniversery of their children’s disappearance on Sept. 26.

“We will go to the embassies... and do the hunger strike until they return our children,” Maria Concepcion Tlaltempa, mother of one of the students, told EFE.

A total of 35 relatives arrived Sunday in Guadalajara, the capital of the western state of Jalisco, along with other students from the Ayotzinapa school. They were part of the “Northern Caravan” that was initiated on July 29 and crossed the states of Chihuahua, Coahuila, Durango, Zacatecas and Guanajuato, and meant to conclude on Aug. 11 in Michoacan.

On the Aug. 26, the relatives have planned to visit all the foreign embassies, in order to ask them to support the request of the Inter-American Commission of Human Rights – part of the Organization of American States: the Mexican government should allow judicial authorities to interrogate the military officials from the 27th Battallion of Iguala, allegedly involved in the disappearances.

One month ago, the Mexican attorney general's office announced it will resume its investigation, during a meeting with relatives of the missing students – for the first time in nearly four months. Relatives had previously broken off talks with the government due to frustrations over the course of the investigation. It did not precise which lead would be followed.

According to the government, the students were murdered and burnt by members of the criminal group Gerreros Unidos, a version that their relatives question as an international team of forensics were not able to match the ashes with the students DNA. The attorney general's office had declared the case closed in December, having determined that the missing students were killed and their bodies burned, after they were turned over to an organized crime group by municipal police.

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