Mexico rights group: no final count of clandestine graves

AP News
Posted: Apr 06, 2017 6:34 PM
Mexico rights group: no final count of clandestine graves

MEXICO CITY (AP) — Mexico's government human rights agency said Thursday that tens of thousands of people have been recorded as missing across the country over the past two decades. And thousands have been reported found in clandestine graves during the drug war of the past 10 years.

But the National Human Rights Commission says the exact numbers are a mystery.

It asked prosecutors in all 31 states how many people had gone missing since 1995, and came up with a tentative figure of 32,236, higher than previous estimates of 29,903. But it's unclear how many among the latest figure may have been located.

Some states didn't answer when asked how many clandestine graves had been found since 2007, but those that did reported 855 pits containing 1,548 bodies. Only about half of those bodies have been identified.

The commission said Thursday that press accounts indicated 1,143 pits had been found nationwide, containing 3,230 bodies.

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The families of missing and disappeared people have long complained of a lack of information and real investigation in Mexico into their loved ones' whereabouts.

The commission has recommended that national databases be compiled of clandestine graves and DNA samples from the bodies found, to try to match them with missing people.