Human rights in Mexico

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Human Rights in Mexico have been an issue for years.[1] The problems include torture, extrajudicial killings and summary executions,[2] police repression,[3] sexual murder, and, more recently, news reporter assassinations.[4]


Freedom of the press[edit]

Mexico is one of the most dangerous countries in the world for journalists and among the ones with the highest levels of unsolved crimes against the press.[5] Though the exact figures of those killed are often conflicting,[6] press freedom organizations around the world agree through general consensus that Mexico is among the most dangerous countries on the planet to exercise journalism as a profession.[7][8][9]

Nearly 100 media workers have been killed or disappeared since 2000, and most of these crimes remained unsolved, improperly investigated, and with few perpetrators arrested and convicted.[10]


Further information: List of massacres in Mexico

Massacres have occurred in Mexican history. In recent years they've been related to the Mexican drug war, but also include prison riots, political motivated massacres, and conflicts in regional areas.


Further information: Corruption in Mexico

Corruption plagues the various levels of police, and is frequently difficult to track down and prosecute since police officers may be protected by district attorneys and other members of the judiciary. The problem is especially pronounced in northern border areas such as Tijuana, where police are engaged by drug traffickers to protect and enforce their illicit interests.[11]

The Mexican police force often do not investigate crimes, will generally randomly select someone to be the guilty party then fabricate the evidence.[12] This issue is a major problem throughout Mexico as many of the actual police force are the ones involved in the crimes or are trying to cover up their poor police work.[13]

Domestic violence[edit]

Further information: Women in Mexico

The rate of domestic violence against women in Mexican marital relationships varies at between 30 and 60 percent of relationships.[14]

As of 2014, Mexico has the 16th highest rate of homicides committed against women in the world.[15] This rate has been on the rise since 2007.[15]

Gender violence is more prevalent in regions along the Mexico-US border and in areas of high drug trading activity and drug violence.[16]

According to the 2013 Human Rights Watch, many women do not seek out legal redress after being victims of domestic violence and sexual assault because "the severity of punishments for some sexual offenses contingent on the "chastity" of the victim" and "those who do report them are generally met with suspicion, apathy, and disrespect."[17]

In September 2014, several Mexican human rights groups and International Federation for Human Rights, had filed a complaint with the office of the prosecutor of the International Criminal Court, asking it to investigate the “systematic and widespread” abuse of thousands of civilians by the army and the police in their fight against organized crime.[18]

Child labor[edit]

According to the updated version of the U.S. Department of Labor's List of Goods Produced by Child Labor or Forced Labor issued in December 2014, child labor contributes to the production of a total of 11 goods in Mexico, 10 of which are agricultural goods (including coffee, tobacco and sugarcane) and the remaining item is pornography. Among the list's 74 countries where significant instances of indentured labor have been observed, 7 countries were reported to resort to child labor in the pornography industry and Mexico was one of them.

LGBT rights[edit]

Main article: LGBT rights in Mexico

Same-sex sexual acts are legal in Mexico, but LGBT people have been prosecuted through the use of legal codes that regulate obscene or lurid behavior (atentados a la moral y las buenas costumbres). Over the past twenty years, there have been reports of violence against gay men, including the murders of openly gay men in Mexico City and of transvestites in the southern state of Chiapas.[19]

Local activists believe that these cases often remain unsolved, blaming the police for a lack of interest in investigating them and for assuming that gays are somehow responsible for attacks against them.[20]

Human rights advocacy[edit]

Attacks on human rights advocates[edit]

  • Digna Ochoa was a human rights lawyer who was murdered in 2001.
  • On 26 April 2010 several human rights activists on their way to San Juan Copala, subject to a paramilitary blockade since January were ambushed by Ubisort-militia. Two were killed, and twelve are missing.[21]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Azam Ahmed (March 16, 2017). "While Scolding Trump, Mexico Seeks to Curtail Citizens' Rights". NYT. Retrieved March 20, 2017. 
  2. ^
  3. ^ Represión policial y paramilitar en Oaxaca; tres muertos y 23 heridos
  4. ^ Roig-Franzia, Manuel (14 July 2007). "Americans Covering Mexico Drug Trade Face Assassination Threat". The Washington Post. 
  5. ^ Lauría 2010, p. 3.
  6. ^ "Mexico probes journalist Regina Martinez's death". BBC News. 29 April 2012. Archived from the original on 24 July 2013. Retrieved 24 July 2013. 
  7. ^ "Deadly Trends for Journalists in 2011; 103 Killed". International Press Institute. 4 January 2012. Archived from the original on 24 July 2013. Retrieved 24 July 2013. 
  8. ^ "Mexico". Reporters Without Borders. Archived from the original on 24 July 2013. Retrieved 24 July 2013. 
  9. ^ "UN human rights office concerned about killing of journalists in Mexico". United Nations. Archived from the original on 24 July 2013. Retrieved 24 July 2013. 
  10. ^ "Freedom of Expression in Mexico". PEN American Center. Archived from the original on 23 July 2013. Retrieved 23 July 2013. 
  11. ^ "Police Drug Corruption". 
  12. ^ Thompson, Ginger (September 26, 2005). "In Mexico's Murders, Fury Is Aimed at Officials". New York Times. 
  13. ^ "Mexico Police Torture persists". Reuters News Alerts. 
  14. ^ Finkler, Kaja (1997). "Gender, domestic violence and sickness in Mexico.". Social Science & Medicine. 45 (8): 1147–1160. doi:10.1016/s0277-9536(97)00023-3. 
  15. ^ a b "Femicide and Impunity in Mexico: A context of structural and generalized violence" (PDF). Retrieved 12 March 2014. 
  16. ^ Wright, Melissa W. (March 2011). "Necropolitics, Narcopolitics, and Femicide: Gendered Violence on the Mexico-U.S. Border". Signs. 36 (3): 707–731. doi:10.1086/657496. JSTOR 10.1086/657496. 
  17. ^ Human Rights Watch. "World Report 2013: Mexico". Retrieved 6 April 2014. 
  18. ^ New York Times (12 September 2014). "Mexican Rights Groups File Suit for 'Systematic and Widespread' Abuse by Army and Police". 
  19. ^  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  20. ^ Herrick and Stuart, p. 144.
  21. ^ Rights activists killed in Mexico, Andrew Wander, 28th of April 2010, Al Jazeera, (English)

External links[edit]