Parents of the Ayotzinapa Rural College students claim that 15 days after their children disappeared on September 26, the Guerrero government tried to bribe them with US$8,000 (100,000 pesos) to “keep quiet.”
The allegations were made at a Friday meeting between academics and students at a Mexico City high school.At the meeting, Bernabe Abraham Gaspar, father of Adan Abraham de la Cruz, one of the missing youngsters from Guerrero, told La Jornada: “People from the government came and told us ‘listen, do you need anything? Look sign these papers and we will give you 100,000 pesos.’ For what? So we would shut up!”
In addition, El Sur reported Friday that a secretary general of the Ricardo Flores Magon Student Committee, David Flores Maldonado said that the family members of the 43 missing students also denounced the attempted bribes at their meeting with Mexican president Enrique Peña Nieto. The Ayotzinapa parents, along with family members of Gabriel Echeverría and Alexis Herrera Pino, who were assassinated in 2011 by police on the Highway of the Sun, reiterated the claim that former Guerrero Governor Angel Aguirre Rivero offered the families money, houses, and cars in exchange for not seeking justice.
At another meeting at the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM), the family members accused authorities at all levels of government of cooperating with organized crime in committing the murders and forced disappearances. Clemente Rodriguez Moreno, father of missing 19-year-old student Christian Rodríguez, blasted the federal government for not doing anything or finding anybody.
“35 days have already gone by, and I just want to say, if my son has any kind of media, a camera, and he is watching me, or listening to me, ‘don’t worry, I will come for him, I will come for the 43 youngsters.’ Whatever happens, I just want to see them alive,” he told the audience of college students.Valentín Cordelio Gonzalez, brother-in-law of Gabriel Garcia Hernandez, one of the 43 missing students, underscored that Iguala has become a cemetery, referring to the clandestine graves recently found all around the area. However, Gonzalez said that the family members and survivors of the massacre will not just gather the bodies and go home like the government wants.
According to Mexico’s Forensic Medical Service, a total of 152 bodies have been found this year in the state of Guerrero, and 242 have been disappeared this year.
“If there aren’t scientific studies done soon to ascertain whether the bodies found in the 60 graves near Iguala belong to the missing students, we will continue to join the family members in their search. We want to identify the bodies,” said Abel Barrera, director of the Mountain Human Rights Center of Guerrero Tlachinollan.
This week marked the one-month anniversary of the violent events that took place in Iguala when police and drug traffickers, allegedly on orders by then-governor Abarca, attacked students and protesters, killing six, injuring 20, and disappearing 43 aspiring rural school teachers.