By Ruby Rizvi, News Editor
In late September of 2014, 43 students went missing after they attended an education protest in Ayotzinapa, Mexico.
Four months later, we’re still no closer to finding out exactly what happened, or where the students have disappeared to. However, the government of Mexico has decided that the search has gone on long enough.
President Pena Nieto suggested that the country move on, and that the ordeal has come to a dead end. He, and many other government officials have decided to call off the search and declare those missing as “dead’.
“The families deserve closure,” Maya Diaz said. “Although the government has stopped searching, the community won’t. These students are their brothers, cousins, and neighbors. You don’t just give up.” Diaz is a long time Savannah activist.
Mexico’s Attorney General Jesús Murillo Karam said, “from day one, we have been in solidarity with the pain of the families and the victims as well as with our responsibility to bring those who did this to justice.” Despite this public statement, many disagree.
There have been numerous protests against the action, some peaceful and some angry. Protesters flooded the streets holding signs saying, “we are all Ayotzinapa.” There have also been threats to burn 43 buildings, one for each missing student.
Protesters accused the government of coinciding with gangs. “Atotzinapa is not the only state that was attacked, but rather all of Mexico,” an anonymous protester said. “Education is the only thing that can help us; unfortunately, it doesn’t suit the government.”
The incident has not only affected those in Mexico, but those outside of the country as well. Mexican-American Lucy Aradillas is the manager of the Camino program here at Armstrong, and has family still in Mexico. “It’s really scary because I have so much family still in Mexico. They live in cities so you’d think they’d be safer there but most of the time they’re not.” She also remarks on how the incident is telling of the amount of corruption in Mexico is right now. “You’re supposed to be able to trust the police, and trust the government. When that’s taken away from you, or rather hasn’t been there for such a long time, it’s not a good thing.”
Although the fact that the government has called off the search and declared the victims dead has enraged the citizens of Mexico, that is not the only reason they are upset. After four months, many, including the families of the victims themselves, have come to terms with the fact that their loved ones may be gone, but they still wish to continue the search in order to find the remains and give them a proper burial.