Mexico welcomes Merida, without human rights restrictions

President Calderon on Friday welcomed the U.S. Congress’ approval of the Merida Initiative a day earlier, an aid injection from the United States which is aimed at helping Mexico in its fight against  powerful drug cartels.

The bill has dropped a controversial requirement that Mexico meet certain human rights standards in order to receive the aid. Mexicans had objected to the human rights provision, saying that it amounted to outside meddling by the United States in Mexican affairs. But dropping the human rights requirements seems certain to anger numerous opposition groups to the aid package – see this La Plaza post on the issue. Continue reading

Advertisements

Rights group attacks impunity in Mexico

article19The limited attempts of the Mexican Government to tackle the high levels of violence against journalists testifies ‘to the inability or unwillingness of the Mexican authorities to make the fight against impunity,’ according to Article19, the freedom of expression NGO.

Dr. Agnes Callamard, executive director of the group, said in a statement that the impunity enjoyed by those responsible for violence against journalists is ‘one of the most alarming characteristics of the overall human rights situation in Mexico’.

Mexico is still the deadliest country in the Americas for journalists, according to Reporters Without Borders. Continue reading

President Calderon: Cacho Case ‘Not a Political Compromise’

calderonPresident Felipe Calderon said yesterday in a speech marking the end of his first year in office that the exoneration of Puebla Governor Mario Marin in last week’s Supreme Court ruling was ‘not a political trade-off’, according to reports today.

Speaking at a press conference last night in which he summarized his first year in office, Calderon’s comments were in response to media speculation that Marin got off easy in the case filed by Lydia Cacho as part of a deal between Calderon’s National Action Party (PAN) and the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI), which was the ruling part in Mexico until Calderon’s predecessor Fox took office in 2000.

Various columnists and pundits in the Mexican press have alleged that by placating the PRI, the president would have found it easier to push through some key reforms, but Calderon denied that the SupremerCourt decision was a politically motivated move.

But although Calderon has drawn fairly good reviews from the press following the end of the first year of his tenure as President, but this recent ruling suggests that despite his crackdown on organized crime, impunity is still stronger than justice in Mexico.