Two Years After a Night of Horror, Mexican Students Seek Answers
Edgar Andrés Vargas, 21, survived a night of violence in September 2014 in which 43 Mexican college students were kidnapped. He was shot in the face and has had six surgeries. Credit Meghan Dhaliwal for The New York Times
MEXICO CITY — Two years after 43 Mexican college students disappeared during a night of violence committed, in part, by security forces, the mystery of their fate remains unsolved.
An international panel of legal and human rights experts who spent a year studying the case questioned the Mexican government’s ability and willingness to get to the bottom of it.
Since the experts’ departure in April, the government has broadened its investigation to include a wider range of possible suspects. In addition, theattorney general’s top investigator resigned amid an internal affairs inquiry into his handling of the case.
Still, there is a prevailing feeling here and abroad that the Mexican government alone cannot be left to figure out who was behind the violence in Iguala in Guerrero State on the night of Sept. 26, 2014, and what happened to the students, most of them freshmen. Many observers are now pinning their hopes for justice on the Washington-based Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, which will deploy a team to shadow the investigation.
The parents of the disappeared and the dead, most of them working class, have maintained their relentless lobby for answers. Accompanying them throughout have been the dozens of students who lived through the night but will forever reckon with its scars. Here are three of them.
Edgar Andrés Vargas
Last Thursday, Mr. Andrés underwent a sixth surgery to repair his face. During the attacks in Iguala, he was struck by a bullet that pulverized his upper teeth and shattered his upper jaw. He does not know how many more operations he will have to endure.
At the time of the attacks, Mr. Andrés was a third-year student at the Escuela Normal Rural Raúl Isidro Burgos, a teachers college in Ayotzinapa. He was among a group of students who responded to distress calls from freshmen who had come under fire by the municipal police in Iguala, a nearby city. The younger students had gone to Iguala to commandeer buses to go to a demonstration in Mexico City, a longstanding practice at the college.
Mr. Andrés and his peers arrived after the 43 students had disappeared. While they examined the scene, gunmen fired, hitting Mr. Andrés. Despite his wounds, he was ignored by military personnel and even by the medical Two Years After a Night of Horror, Mexican Students Seek Answers - The New York Times: