Amnesty International Accuses Mexican Army of Torture

In a report released yesterday, Amnesty International accused the Mexican Army of committing numerous human rights violations, including torture and forced dissapearances in the country's ongoing war against the drug cartels. The human rights watchdog group also accuses local authorities of ignoring the abuses and failure to investigate the allegations.

Kerrie Howard, deputy director of Amnesty International's Americas program, said, "There is a disturbing pattern of crimes committed by the military in
their security operations, abuse that is being denied and ignored by
both the civilian and the military authorities in Mexico." 

In response to the report, the Mexican government issued a statement indicating that the country's interior secretary will look into the allegations. Below is a section of the statement released by the government:

"The federal government recognizes the work that the armed forces
are doing in combating crime and organized delinquency. At the same time, the government recognizes the consequences its
actions could generate in its contact with the citizenry, so it has
adopted preventive measures. In this sentiment, the Mexican
government has full intent and ability to punish authorities and public
servants who could commit any violation of human rights in the exercise
of their functions and duties."

President Felipe Calderon has yet to make any direct reference to the Amnesty International report, but he did mention human rights during a speech he gave for an unrelated ceremony on Tuesday evening. "It is time to redouble our efforts to leave our children the Mexico
that we want, and that Mexico that we want should be, of course, a
Mexico that scrupulously respects the fundamental rights of people."