CANCUN, Mexico – Relatives of the 43 education students who disappeared in southern Mexico in 2014 gathered on Monday outside the Cancun hotel where the 47th Organization of American States (OAS) General Assembly is taking place to thank Venezuela for taking the case to the regional body.
“We’re here to thank and express our support to the Venezuelan foreign minister,” who is going to bring the case of the missing students to the floor at the OAS General Assembly, a spokesman for the victims’ families, Felipe de Jesus de la Cruz, told EFE.
Venezuela and other countries are more concerned about the disappearance of the Ayotzinapa Rural Normal School students in Iguala, a city in Guerrero state, than the Mexican government, which tells the world that it respects human rights while doing the opposite, De la Cruz said.
Venezuelan Foreign Minister Delcy Rodriguez, according to diplomats, plans to introduce a resolution on the Ayotzinapa case as part of a strategy for dealing with Mexico, which is leading an effort to introduce a resolution on the crisis in Venezuela.
About 60 people, including eight of the parents of the 43 missing students, gathered outside the Moon Palace Hotel, where the OAS General Assembly is taking place amid tight security.
Police prevented the demonstrators from entering the hotel lobby, raising tensions and leading to some pushing between the opposing sides.
The missing students’ parents plan to start a caravan Tuesday in Campeche that will tour southeastern Mexico, wrapping up on July 1 in Chiapas in an effort to “keep their movement alive,” De la Cruz said.
“The government is not going to tell us the truth (about what happened to the students), they are covering it up,” the spokesman for the families said.
Iguala municipal police officers fired gunshots at students from the Ayotzinapa Rural Normal School, a nearby teacher-training facility, on the night of Sept. 26, 2014, Mexican officials say.
Six people died that night, 25 were wounded and 43 students were detained by police and then handed over to members of the Guerreros Unidos drug cartel.
The official version of events is that the Guerreros Unidos cartel murdered the students and cremated the remains at the dump in Cocula in an enormous fire that burned for hours.
The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) Interdisciplinary Group of Independent Experts said in a report released on April 24, 2016, that the evidence pointed to the Federal Police being present at the majority of places where the Iguala tragedy unfolded either during or just after the events occurred.
The experts said that some soldiers changed their statements to federal prosecutors after the IACHR’s first report on the case was released in September 2015.
The final report released by the experts also said the new study on the cremation of the bodies at the Cocula dump lacked a scientific foundation and reiterated that there was no evidence that the bodies had been incinerated at the dump.