SANTO DOMINGO – Mexican civil society groups asked the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights on Monday to press Mexico’s government to create an “autonomous, independent and professional” agency to investigate cases of torture.
In Mexico, torture “has become a normal practice and, even worse, it is common among military, police and prosecutorial institutions at the different levels of government,” one of the activists said, reading from a statement.
Proof that “impunity persists in the country” lies in the fact that more than 9,000 accusations of torture investigated since 2006 have resulted in only 16 convictions, the delegation said during the 168th session of the rights panel, convened last week in Santo Domingo.
In response to the activists, representatives from the Mexican government highlighted actions taken to deal with torture.
The Mexican government “has an obligation to implement effective measures” to prevent, punish and eradicate torture “acting with energy and determination against those responsible for the abuses, and never against those who bravely defend their rights,” an official said.
The office of the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Torture said in February 2017 that torture and other abusive conduct toward people in the hands of the security forces continued to be widespread in Mexico.