International human rights officials are demanding an investigation into the brutal sexual assaults of 11 Mexican women during protests a decade ago — an inquiry that would take aim at President Enrique Peña Nieto, who was the governor in charge at the time of the attacks.
The demand is part of a multiyear examination by the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights into abuses during a 2006 crackdown ordered by Peña Nieto on San Salvador Atenco, a town in Mexico State where demonstrators had taken over the central square. During the operations, which left two dead, more than 40 women were violently detained by the police, packed onto buses and sent to jail several hours away.
The case was brought by 11 women to the international commission, which found that the police tortured them sexually. The women — a mix of merchants, students and activists — were raped, beaten, penetrated with metal objects, robbed and humiliated, made to sing aloud to entertain the police. One was forced to perform oral sex on multiple officers. After the women were imprisoned, days passed before they were given proper medical examinations, the commission found.
“I have not overcome it, not even a little,” said one of the women, Maria Patricia Romero Hernández, weeping. “It is something that haunts me and you don’t survive. It stays with you.”
NBC – Aurelio Cabrera Campos was the eighth journalist killed in Mexico this year, according to a report released by CPJ research. Unknown assailants shot multiple rounds at the journalist’s car about 11 p.m. on Sept.14 while driving near Huauchinango, a city in Puebla. The Committee to Protect Journalists urged authorities in the central Mexican state of Puebla to conduct a full credible investigation.
WSJ – An accused drug kingpin, whose mansion yielded the world’s largest cash seizure, faces imminent extradition to Mexico after a refusal by U.S. Chief Justice John Roberts to grant an emergency stay. Wednesday’s order could end a nearly decade-long U.S. legal battle for Zhenli Ye Gon, who has been in custody since 2007.
BBC – Women in a community in southern Mexico have voted in local elections for the first time, after winning a three-year battle for the right to choose a mayor and councillors alongside their male relatives.
Reuters – Mexico’s peso briefly strengthened on Wednesday after the U.S. Federal Reserve left interest rates unchanged but strongly signaled it could still tighten monetary policy by the end of this year as the labor market improves further. The peso strengthened 0.6 percent to 19.7 pesos per dollar on the announcement, but reversed gains soon after.
Link –A local activist is taking a playful approach to tackle a deadly violation of pedestrian rights in Mexico City. It is estimated that the 5 million cars operating in Mexico City cause 63 traffic accidents, leave 21 wounded, and kill 3 people every day. At least one of those fatalities is a pedestrian. Traffic accidents claim more casualties than the country’s infamous drug war. Also, traffic accidents are the leading cause of death in Mexican children.
Atlas Obscura – The Monarch Butterfly Biosphere Reserve and has been a protected site in Mexico since 1980. But ever since then—and likely before—the forest has remained threatened by illegal logging. On Tuesday, Mexican authorities announced steps towards fighting that threat, in the form of the closure of seven sawmills that had been operating illegally in the reserve.
Sentido Comun – A new investigative report, called Bahamas Leaks, revealed that hundreds of companies, entrepreneurs and Mexican politicians have created financial structures or have investments in Bahamas, one of the best known tax havens in the world.
El Economista – The effort by avocado producers to boost exports over nearly two decades has paid off, as the sale of avocados to the United States reached 800,000 tons this year Last year the amount was 640,000 tons.
Two Mexican priests were found murdered Monday, just hours after they were kidnapped from the low-income neighborhood where they served in the Gulf coast state of Veracruz.
Prosecutors said the two men were abducted from their church in the state’s northern city of Poza Rica on Sunday. The priests were found with bullet wounds in the municipality of Papantla, close to where they were kidnapped.
A third man, a church assistant, managed to escape the kidnappers. He was found on Monday and put under police protection.
The Mexican Council of Bishops identified the slain priests as Alejo Nabor Jimenez Juarez and Jose Alfredo Juarez de la Cruz.
“We express our pain and indignation at the violence committed against them,” the Bishops said in a statement.
Poza Rica and it surrounding environs has been the scene of drug-related gang violence for many years. But it’s unclear why the Catholic clergymen were targeted.
Priests have been killed before in Mexico, but many of the killings have occurred in the Pacific coast state of Guerrero. What motivated the abductors to slay the priests remains unclear.
Reuters -Mexico’s peso and stocks slipped on Monday as investors showed caution ahead of policy meetings by the U.S. Federal Reserve and the Bank of Japan on Wednesday. A range of mixed economic figures and conflicting remarks by key Fed policymakers have kept investors guessing over the timing of the next U.S. rate hike.
NBC – Mexican Architect Javier Senosiain looks out over his sinuous snake’s nest of a building, providing relaxation and tranquility to those who live in the very edge of Mexico City’s urban sprawl, and reflects on over 30 years of building egg- and cocoon-like dwellings that are quite literally out of the box.
City Lab – In the media, Mexico City’s most important people often appear to be male politicians and businessmen. But on the city’s crowded streets, it’s women who run things. There are no public numbers on the leadership of the myriad street vendor organizations, self-produced housing developments, and indigenous groups in the metro of 21.2 million. But Alejandra Barrios, perhaps the most influential street vendor in Mexico City, estimates that of the approximately 100 organizations in the city’s central areas, 80 percent are led by women.
Washington Post – Authorities in Mexico have discovered a van outfitted with a makeshift bazooka, apparently intended to launch packages over the U.S. border,the Mexican national security commission says.
Reuters – In some of the first signs of how some investors in Corporate America are bracing for a President Donald Trump, several large investors have expressed concern to Citigroup management in recent private meetings about the impact a victory for the Republican might have on its Banamex subsidiary.
By Greg Gardner and Brent Snavely / Detroit Free Press
Ford plans to eventually shift all North American small-car production from the U.S. to Mexico, CEO Mark Fields told investors Tuesday, even though the company’s production investments in Mexico have become a lightning rod for controversy in the presidential election.
“Over the next two to three years, we will have migrated all of our small-car production to Mexico and out of the United States,” Fields said at a daylong investor conference in Dearborn.
The news sparked a fresh round of criticism of Ford from Republican Presidential candidate Donald Trump, who was campaigning in Flint on Wednesday.
“We shouldn’t allow it to happen. They’ll make their cars, they’ll employ thousands of people, not from this country, and they’ll sell their car across the border,” Trump said during his visit. “When we send our jobs out of Michigan, we’re also sending our tax base.”
The impact on Ford’s U.S. employment will be minimal in the near-term. Ford already builds the Fiesta subcompact and the Fusion mid-size sedan in Mexico. There is an expectation that Ford will build a new Ranger mid-size pickup truck in Wayne and possibly a new Bronco compact sport-utility.
Ford isn’t the first automaker to move small car production out of the U.S. Mexico has become an auto production Mecca for new industry investment, surpassing Canada in annual automotive production.
BBC – The head of Mexico’s criminal investigation agency, charged with looking into the disappearance of 43 college students, has resigned. The families of the students, who have not been seen since September 2014, had demanded that Tomas Zeron resign. No reason was given for him standing down on Wednesday.