Bring Justice to Families Affected by Mexico’s Enforced Disappearances

Target: Mexican President Enrique Pena Neito

Goal: Address state enforced disappearances of Mexican citizens

Human Rights Watch documented nearly 250 disappearances that occurred during Mexico’s former administration from December 2006 to December 2012. Of those disappearances half were enforced disappearances involving state authorities. The current administration, along with President Nieto, has promised to make sure those responsible for the disappearances are brought to justice. The president has done little to follow through with that promise.

During the time of the research, Human Rights Watch found evidence that various members of all branches of military and security forces were involved in carrying out the disappearances. In over 60 cases, state agents directly collaborated with major organized crime groups to disappear people and extort payment from their families. Although 250 cases of disappearance have been documented, official reports by the Federal Prosecutor’s Office and the Interior of Ministry estimate that 25,000 people have actually disappeared or been reported missing since 2006.

Despite President Nieto’s promise to provide justice, family and friends of the disappeared population continue to suffer without answers. President Nieto must make it a priority to bring justice to the families of the disappeared by persecuting the perpetrators. He can start by establishing a comprehensive and accurate database of those disappeared, and of unidentified remains. Reforming the Military Code of Justice would ensure disappearances are investigated, and revising the federal definition of enforced disappearances would ensure that it is consistent across Mexico and aligned with international human rights law. Sign the petition below to urge Mexican President Pena Neito to address the state enforced disappearances of Mexican citizens and bring justice to the voiceless victims.


Dear President Enrique Pena Neito,

Since 2006 there have been an estimated 25,000 enforced disappearances of citizens, according to reports by the Federal Prosecutor’s Office and the Interior of Ministry. These reports reflect larger and more comprehensive studies that are broad estimates. Human Rights Watch was able to find verifiable documentation of only 250 disappearances from 2006 to 2012, which shows the lack of comprehensive data available. Of the verified disappearances, roughly half were perpetrated by state authorities. Documented in 60 cases, state agents directly collaborated with major organized crime groups to disappear people and exhort their families for payment.

After thousands of disappearances, friends and family are still left without answers or solace. President Neito, you have promised to address this issue but have yet to act on the matter. An essential step would be to establish an accurate database of the disappeared and unidentified remains to assure verifiable documentation of the numbers of disappeared. In addition reforming the Military Code of Justice to insure disappearances are investigated and are in alignment with international law.

Please fulfill your promise and investigate the disappearances of your citizens so the families of those taken will finally have justice served.


[Your Name Here]

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44 Signatures

  • Ana Maria Mainhardt Carpes
  • Ellen McCann
  • Darlene Roepke
  • Lynn Juozilaitis
  • Ann Blank
  • tam O
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