Prosecutor leading probe into missing Mexican students resigns

  • World
  • Wednesday, 28 Sep 2022

FILE PHOTO: Women wearing face masks hold a Mexican flag as relatives of the 43 missing students of the Ayotzinapa Teacher Training College march on the 6th anniversary of their disappearance in Mexico City, Mexico September 26, 2020. REUTERS/Edgard Garrido

MEXICO CITY (Reuters) - The prosecutor leading the investigation into the abduction and suspected murder of 43 Mexican student teachers in 2014 has resigned over disagreements about the process, Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said on Tuesday.

Omar Gomez was appointed to the head the probe into the disappearances of the Ayotzinapa college student teachers in 2019 not long after Lopez Obrador came to power.

"He's going to leave his post ... because he disagreed with the procedures that were followed," Lopez Obrador told a news conference following media reports about Gomez's departure.

"We're receiving a lot of pressure from many parties, but we have the firm will to do justice," he added, stressing that the attorney general would name a replacement.

Monday marked the eighth anniversary of the crime in which the youths were believed to have been abducted by corrupt police in cahoots with a local drug gang in the southwestern city of Iguala.

Officials say the students were then murdered, but very few of their remains have been conclusively identified.

Mexico's top human rights official recently presented findings of an investigation into the case, calling it "a state crime," and pointing to the involvement of the armed forces.

Last week, an unredacted version of the August report was published in Mexican newspaper Reforma, naming officials allegedly involved, and saying the bodies of the kidnapped students were taken to a military base.

Earlier this week, Lopez Obrador - who has promised to clear up the case before leaving office in 2024 - confirmed that prosecutors had canceled 21 of the 83 arrest warrants recently issued against former public and military officials.

(This story fixes link in paragraph)

(Reporting by Lizbeth Diaz and Raul Cortes; Edited by Diego Oré and Alistair Bell)

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