Indigenous groups call on Canadian government to return Tomás Zerón to Mexico in Ayotzinapa case

Published by Brent Patterson on

Photo by Peace Brigades International-Mexico Project.

CBC reports: “On June 29, three Indigenous groups in Canada — Idle No More, Defenders of the Land and the Truth Before Reconciliation Campaign — issued an open letter to Trudeau demanding he state publicly the Canadian government’s position on the case.”

Their letter states: “We as Indigenous Peoples of the Northern Territories of the Great Turtle Island Abya Yala [Canada] stand united with the families of Ayotzinapa in response to their international call for solidarity and justice.”

CBC further reports: “The father of one of the 43 Indigenous students disappeared in Mexico in September 2014, is asking the Canadian government to act on a request from Mexico to extradite Tomás Zerón, the country’s former head of criminal investigations, back to Mexico.”

That article adds: “Antonio Tizapa, whose son, Jorge Antonio Tizapa Legideño, 20, said he wants the Canadian government to act immediately on Mexico’s request.”

Peace Brigades International has previously noted: “The families of the 43 students, the current students of the School of Ayotzinapa and the organisations that accompany them – among them the Tlachinollan Human Rights Centre whose members receive PBI accompaniment – have suffered intimidation and threats.”

This 10-minute PBI video interview with Maria Luisa Aguilar of the Tlachinollan Human Rights Centre also tells of the calls the Centre received from some of the students on the day of the attack against them and highlights that the students were political activists.

And this 90-second PBI-Mexico video conveys the anguish of the families of the disappeared who will not give up their search for justice.

The students were en route to Mexico City to observe the anniversary of the Tlatelolco Massacre in which the Mexican Army had killed hundreds of people at a large demonstration protesting against the 1968 Olympics in Mexico City.

In terms of what happened to the students, NACLA reports that an independent body from the Inter-American Human Rights Commission found that, “the events of September 26 and 27 were coordinated actions between several government agencies, with the direct participation of at least the federal, state, and municipal police, and organized crime.”

That report also established the involvement of the Mexican Army.

PBI-Canada extends its solidarity to all those families who are seeking justice and the return of their disappeared loved ones.

For more, please see this April 2015 statement: Idle No More in Solidarity with Ayotzinapa.

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