by Mattia Pascal
The ineptitude, corruption and neglect of the former Leonel Godoy Rangel (Democratic Revolutionary Party) (PRD) government that the current constitutional governor of Michoacan, Fausto Vallejo, inherited, are reflected every day in the Purepecha Meseta. In this climate now associated with the abducted UVM (University del Valle de Mexico) psychology graduates who, along with a Movimiento Ciudadano youth coordinator, were invited to provide workshops for children at the Cantoya International Balloon Festival during the second week in July of this year. The abductees are two young Psychologists Ana Belen Sanchez Mayorga (30) and Diego Maldonado Castañeda (34), and the Movimiento Ciudadano youth coordinator, Luis Enrique Castañeda Nava (30). These professionals came to Paracho, Michoacan on Wednesday, July 18th. They stayed at the Hotel Santa Fe, located in the centre of Paracho. In the early morning hours of Sunday, July 22nd, several armed and masked men came and took them away. The hotel manager denies having seen who entered the building, although there were some traces left behind. Suspiciously the hotel closed for ‘maintenance’ on Monday, July 23rd. However, one detail stands out- their belongings were left in their hotel rooms. This suggests that it was, in fact, a kidnapping, potentially one with political overtones of retaliation or revenge. Their whereabouts are still unknown. The kidnappers have not contacted relatives of the victims. On Monday, July 23rd, the families reported the crime to the Public Ministery of Paracho. Antonio Ramirez accompanied the police to the crime scene. The hotel manager then stated: “I heard a racket, but I hid in fear.” He did not indicate that the hotel would then close. The only thing one can suspect is that the hotel manager had set them up. In any case, his contradiction is another clue.
UVM, CNDH AND NON-GOVERNMENTAL ORGANIZATIONS SHOULD JOIN FORCES TO RESCUE THE KIDNAPPED
Also, the Michoacan state Attorney, Placido Torres Pineda (Attorney General of Justice), only confirmed what had happened, but until Wednesday July 25th, did not indicate that he had had any special agents following this, the umpteenth kidnapping case. That the victims are UVM professionals and a leader of a national political party, the case should be delegated to the National Commission of Human Rights (CNDH). A mere remark that “in Michoacan during the last 5 years, we have identified 120 kidnapping cases,” from an Attorney General of Justice official is an outrage. Is that all there is to be said? In a country that is governed by a rule of law, do kidnappings only count as statistics?! It is an open secret in Michoacan, that Godoy and his family are linked to organized crime groups, so he could have improved his ethics policies in his last days as senator and left “on a high note” by cooperating with the current state government – or for that matter put the pressure on Fausto Vallejo in seeing that the three young professionals return ALIVE, safe and sound. Moreover, the leaders of CONVERGENCE / Movimiento Ciudadano such as Louis Walton, Dante Delgado, Ricardo Cantu, as well as others from the political “left”, need to be making real efforts to end the pain and anguish that the three families are experiencing. To bring Ana Belem Sanchez Mayorga, Diego Maldonado Castañeda and the Movimiento Ciudadano youth coordinator, Luis Enrique Castañeda Nava home. Raul Villanueva Placencia (CNDH), Alejandro Poire (SEGOB) and Fausto Vallejo contribute to this kidnapping if it does not go unpunished. They do not respect the lives of these innocent students. While the victims’ suffering mothers call for solidarity with the brave people of Michoacan, including the constitutional President of the Republic, Felipe Calderón, to unite in goodness and strength to save these three victimized citizens.
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