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News > Mexico

Mexicans Remember Victims of the Tlatelolco Massacre

  • Military attacks a student in Tlatelolco, Mexico city, 1968.

    Military attacks a student in Tlatelolco, Mexico city, 1968. | Photo: X/ @VIM_Media

Published 3 October 2023 (2 hours 16 minutes ago)

Over 300 students were murdered by the Mexican army during a peaceful protest that occurred 10 days before the 1968 Olympic Games.

On Monday, thousands of citizens gathered to demand answers from President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador (AMLO) regarding the massacre that took place in Mexico City on October 2, 1968. The incident involved hundreds of students protesting against the administration of Gustavo Diaz Ordaz (1964-1970).


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They marched from the Three Cultures Square in Tlatelolco, where the massacre occurred, to the Zocalo in front of the National Palace.

Mexico City's Citizen Security Secretary deployed hundreds of police officers, who engaged with protesters at some points along the route.

The march commemorates the 55th anniversary of the death of over 300 students in a massacre carried out by the Army and the "Olympia Battalion" paramilitary group during a peaceful protest that occurred 10 days before the 1968 Olympic Games.

Delfina de la Cruz, a woman who lost her son nine years ago and still does not know his whereabouts, wanted to support the protesters because neither Mexico nor the Mexican people deserve what is happening to them.

"We want to know where our children are and for the government to provide the missing pieces of the investigation to clarify things," she said.

President Lopez Obrador created a Truth Commission for the "Dirty War" to clarify the period of repression in Mexico between the 1960s and 1990s, which includes this episode.

A student, who preferred not to disclose her name, emphasized that the government has not provided any response to what happened over five decades ago.

"If they haven't been able to provide answers for the 43 disappeared comrades from nine years ago, imagine trying to address something that happened 55 years ago. It's something that should have been done a long time ago. That's why the fight continues and will continue," she said.

On Monday, AMLO clarified that Mexico has a loyal army, especially to the people and institutions. He explained that the Armed Forces have five missions, including national and internal security, including guiding the National Guard.

However, this contradicts the fact that AMLO supported a constitutional reform for the Armed Forces to carry out public security tasks until 2028, despite his campaign promise to return them to the barracks.

Nevertheless, the Mexican president affirmed that the military academy has been teaching subjects on human rights and the correct use of force for some time to prevent repression and that the army "should not be tainted by the mistakes of a few individuals."

A student from the community integral network and resistance collective of the National School of Biological Sciences of the National Polytechnic Institute stressed that militarization is still present in the country.

"There are many interests at play on the part of the government because a significant percentage of the country's gross domestic product goes to the military. The government needs to set priorities if it wants a militarized, violent country without an educated and aware youth," he said.

However, the young student believed that the Mexican state remains the same, and the current administration can promise one thing or another while the Army maintains the same or even greater power than before.

Activists also commemorated the ninth anniversary of the 43 students who disappeared in Ayotzinapa on Sept. 26, 2014, with banners that read, "We are not all here. We are missing 43."

Citizens dennounced that the Ayotzinapa case is a "State crime" in which authorities at all levels, including the Army, were acknowledged to be involved by the government.

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