The head of the Mexican army will not permit international experts to interrogate his troops over allegations they might have been involved in the apparent massacre of 43 students last year, and rejects any suggestion they might have played a part.
Salvador Cienfuegos, who is also Mexico’s defence minister, told local television that none of his troops took part in the attack on the trainee teachers in the southwestern city of Iguala in September last year.
One year ago, 43 Mexican students were killed. Still, there are no answers for their families.
The incident shocked the world and created a serious political storm for President Enrique Peña Nieto.
In the months after the incident, the government sought to wrap up its investigation, saying a corrupt cadre of local police, in cahoots with a drug gang, confused the students for a rival gang. The government says they rounded them up and burned them on a pyre in the nearby town of Cocula.
However, a panel of respected international investigators last month rejected the official account, pointing to suspicions of forced confessions and possible collusion by federal and state security forces, including the army.
“I can’t permit them to interrogate my soldiers, who at this point haven’t committed a single crime,” Cienfuegos said.