[JURIST] The Miguel Agustin Pro human rights center [official website] in Mexico on Thursday announced that there is evidence that high-ranking Mexican officers gave soldiers orders to kill criminals prior to an army mass slaying of suspected cartel members in June 2014. The military documents indicate [AP report] that the soldiers may have been following orders during the incident, where at least 12 civilians were killed. The report issued by the human rights center calls into question the government’s use of armed forces since 2006 to help combat drug cartels. The report also states that high-ranking military officers must be scrutinized and investigated for their participation in the 2014
The Mexican military’s actions from last June have been put under a microscope by numerous organizations during the past year. Last October the NHRC released a report [JURIST report] detailing the military cover-up that occurred when 22 cartel suspects were executed by soldiers in the warehouse in the municipality of Tlatlaya. In 2013, Amnesty International (AI) [advocacy website] urged Mexican lawmakers to reform the nation’s military justice system to combat human rights abused committed by army and navy personnel. Also in 2013, AI requested the Mexican government [JURIST report] to investigate the disappearances of thousands of people and acknowledge the government’s involvement in the search for missing persons. That same year the UN Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial summary or arbitrary executions, Christof Heyns [official website], urged Mexico’s government [JURIST report] to better protect against human rights abuses, specifically with respect to the military’s use of force against civilians.