Mexican officials sure missing students murdered

MEXICO CITY - Authorities have gathered enough evidence to be sure that 43 students who went missing four months ago were murdered, Attorney General Jesus Murillo Karam said Tuesday.

Murillo Karam said a confession by Felipe Rodríguez Salgado, a believed gunman for the Guerrero Unidos, or United Warrios, drug cartel arrested two weeks ago in connection with the case, confirmed the admissions of three separate detainees.

According to the detainees’ confessions, made in November, the students from the teacher training college of Ayotzinapa, in the southwestern state of Guerrero, were kidnapped by local police officers in the city of Iguala on Sept 26, then handed over to gang members who murdered then burned their remains before discarding them in a dump in Cocula, a city near Iguala. 

‘’These declarations made by the detainees, which has been confirmed by forensic evidence, testimonies and confessions … show the extent and depth of the investigation and give us the possibility and the legal certainty to declare the students have been killed in the circumstances described,” said Murillo Karam during a press conference.

The attorney general said the conclusions were based on 39 testimonies and evidence found at the dump, including gas, diesel, burned rocks, rubber tires and a large quantity of carbonized remains.

He also said 99 suspects were arrested in connection with the case and 385 witnesses were interviewed and two crime scene reconstructions were made.

“The students were deprived of their liberty, deprived of their lives, incinerated and then thrown in the San Juan River. This is the historical truth of the facts, based on evidence brought by science,” said Murillo Karam.  

The attorney general has been criticized by relatives of the missing students for his handling of the case and for putting forth an official version of events that they say is implausible. 

The parents and civil organization have asked the government to continue to investigate the case and investigate the army that, according to them, could be involved in the crime. 

The attorney general’s announcement comes a day after thousands of demonstrations marched in Mexico to mark the four-month anniversary of the students’ disappearance.

Copyright © 2015 Anadolu Agency