Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Historic Mexican Supreme Court decision: Civilian trials for military accused of human rights abuses

A historic decision by Mexico's Supreme Court: Military personnel that commit human rights abuses are now to be tried in civilian courts, and not military, as has been the practice until now, known as fuero militar.

Organizations such as Human Rights Watch already praised the decision by the Supreme Court, which was moreover unanimous. It reverses the practice of the past 70 years, and follows the recent ruling against Mexico by the Inter-American Human Rights Court, which dealt with Rosendo Radilla, a decaparecida social leader in Guerrero in 1974, which found Mexico's practice incompatible with its human rights charter and international obligations.

Senators and deputies from all major parties - PAN, PRI, PRD - hailed the decision. That is great news.

Yet there were also negative voices. Probably the most hysterical response to the court's ruling comes from Carlos Marín, who in his column suggests  that recent successful operations by the army, such as liberating 20 or so hostages in Monterrey a few days back, will no longer be possible. Does he truly believe his own reactionary nonsense?

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