Friday, November 11, 2011

The brand-new Human Rights Watch Report on Mexico

Human Rights Watch's latest report on Mexico (available here), is drawing much attention. Here is, for example, The Economist's very even-handed story on it.

Bottom line, from the HRW report's Executive Summary:

Human Rights Watch found evidence of a significant increase in human rights violations since Calderón launched his “war on organized crime.” In the five states examined, members of security forces systematically use torture to obtain forced confessions and information about criminal groups. And evidence points to the involvement of soldiers and police in extrajudicial killings and enforced disappearances around the country.
HRW looked at five states, and found, as is now close to the common wisdom, that sending the army has not caused a drop in violence - quite the contrary. In addition, it has resulted in massive human rights abuses from the armed forces:

What we have found is a public security policy that is badly failing on two fronts. It has not succeeded in reducing violence. Instead, it has resulted in a dramatic increase in grave human rights violations, virtually none of which appear to be adequately investigated. In sum, rather than strengthening public security in Mexico, Calderón’s “war” has exacerbated a climate of violence, lawlessness, and fear in many parts of the country.

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