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Mexico must urgently investigate mass grave

Amnesty International today urged the Mexican authorities to conduct a full, independent and effective investigation into the deaths of 59 people, whose bodies were found in mass graves yesterday on a route used by migrants travelling to the USA.

Rupert Knox, Researcher on Mexico at Amnesty International, said:

“The mass graves found yesterday once again show the Mexican government’s failure to deal with the country’s public security crisis and reduce criminal violence which has left many populations vulnerable to attacks, abductions and killings.

“All too often such human rights crimes have gone unpunished, leaving criminal gangs, and officials acting in collusion with them, free to target vulnerable communities, such as irregular migrants.

“The Mexican government must take urgent action to identify the victims of this latest mass killing and bring those responsible to justice. It is vital that all measures taken by the authorities are strictly legal and guarantee protection of human rights. This is the only way to effectively protect the population and ensure justice in Mexico.”

The mass graves were found in a single location in the State of Tamaulipas, in the north of the country, where drug and other criminal gangs operate. The state is also part of the route travelled by migrants on their way to the USA.

In August 2010, the bodies of 72 irregular migrants were found in the same municipality of San Fernando.

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