Things That Matter

President AMLO Just Released New Figures Detailing The Country’s Missing People And It’s Worse Than Previously Thought

New data directly from the government shows that previous estimates of Mexico’s disappeared were grossly under counted. Under President AMLO, the country’s National Search Commission has released updated figures that say there are more than 61,000 missing persons in Mexico – the vast majority of whom (almost one third) went missing just since 2006.

The Drug War has fueled the disappearances as cartels fight for control over important drug trafficking routes against increased scrutiny from the military.

The government said 61,637 people have disappeared since 1964, the vast majority since 2006, when then-president Felipe Calderón began cracking down on drug cartels.

More than 61,000 people have been forcibly disappeared in Mexico in recent years, government officials announced on Monday, a drastic increase of an earlier estimate of the toll of the country’s endemic drug-related violence and cartel warfare.

More than 97.4 percent of the total have gone missing since 2006, when then-President Felipe Calderon sent the army to the streets to fight drug traffickers, fragmenting the cartels and leading to vicious internal fighting. 

“These are data of horror,” Karla Quintana, head of Mexico’s National Search Commission which leads the efforts to find the missing country wide, said in a news conference. Behind the numbers, “there are many painful stories from families both in Mexico and of migrants,” she said.

Ms. Quintana said the new data comes from updated and carefully revised information from the offices of local prosecutors.

The new figures showed a sharp increase from a prior official estimate of 40,000 disappearances from early 2018.

The government announcement differed from those of past administrations, which often played down the issue of drug violence and offered little details about the extent of the issue.

More than half of the overall reported cases were of young people between 15 and 34 years old, 74 percent of whom were men, officials said. Mexican officials said most disappearances have taken place in 10 different states in swaths of the country with a heavy presence of drug cartels.

In Mexico, the number cases of disappeared people surged more recently amid raging violence as drug cartels battled each other over territory and trafficking routes.

As Mexican security forces were deployed to the streets to confront the ever-growing power of organized crime groups, criminals began implementing a highly efficient and vicious strategy: disposing bodies and tossing them into graves in desolate areas, rivers and mountains, to leave no evidence behind.

Last year alone, during the first year of leftist government of President Andrés Manuel López Obrador, more than 9,000 people were forcibly disappeared.

AMLO has adopted a policy of “hugs, not bullets” in dealing with violent crime, focussing on addressing inequality and tackling corruption, but the death toll has continued to climb.

The López Obrador government has faced criticism that it lacks an adequate security strategy to deal with the country’s rampant violence, underscored by recent cases like the siege of the city of Culiacán by the Sinaloa cartel and the massacre of nine members of a Mormon sect in northern Mexico last fall.

Almost a third of the total number of missing persons – 19,108 – disappeared between 2016 and 2018, the final three years of the Enrique Peña Nieto government.

More than 500 field searches across Mexico led to the discovery of 800 clandestine graves and the unearthing of 1,124 bodies.

The official said that between December 1, 2018 and December 31, 2019, authorities have carried out searches for hidden graves at 519 different locations across practically all of Mexico’s 32 federal entities. In February last year, Encinas described the country as a whole as an “enormous hidden grave.”

He said on Monday that the federal government will extend an invitation to the United Nations Committee on Enforced Disappearances to have its members visit Mexico this year.

The government was criticized last month for failing to keep its promise to allow the committee to visit the country and thus open up Mexico’s investigative processes to international scrutiny.

El Chapo’s Mother Claims That The US Illegally Extradited Her Son And She Wants Him Back

Things That Matter

El Chapo’s Mother Claims That The US Illegally Extradited Her Son And She Wants Him Back

ABC News / YouTube

El Chapo’s mother has reportedly asked Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador (AMLO) to bring her son back from U.S. federal custody. María Consuelo Loera Pérez, El Chapo’s mother, claims that the U.S. illegally extradited her son from Mexico.

María Consuelo Loera Pérez, El Chapo’s mom, wants her son brought back to Mexico.

According to Daily Mail, El Chapo’s mother sent a letter to President López Obrador claiming to have information that proves that the U.S illegally extradited her son. In the letter, Loera Pérez argues that her attorneys have sufficient proof that the U.S. acted inappropriately and is asking President López Obrador to bring El Chapo back to serve his sentence in Mexican custody.

It is alleged that Loera Pérez’s attorneys are already in talks to bring El Chapo back to Mexico.

Some people have been able to find humor in the news. El Chapo was extradited and eventually convicted by U.S. authorities on a series of felonies tied to his participation in the drug trade. His involvement in cartel activities in Mexico that spilled into the U.S. led to his extradition and sentencing in U.S. custody.

The news comes after a viral video showed AMLO visiting with El Chapo’s mother.

The video, allegedly taken in Badiraguato, Sinaloa, Mexico, shows AMLO walking up and greeting Loera Pérez as she sits in a car. He can allegedly be heard telling her not to get out of the car and that he did get her letter. The mention of the letter does lend credibility to the claims of El Chapo’s mother fighting to bring him back. However, it is unclear what the letter he mentioned addressed.

The video is drawing strong reactions from people as AMLO is violating social distancing guidelines set forth to combat COVID-19.

AMLO has been panned for leaving Mexico exceptionally vulnerable to the COVID-19 pandemic by not moving quickly enough to set restrictions. Health authorities in Mexico are urging all 130 million citizens to stay indoors and to only leave on essential business.

Some people are more upset with the fact AMLO met with El Chapo’s mother.

“In this case, the least of the problems is the social distancing for Covid19,” @archibaldo53 tweeted. “The true problem is the significance of this visit that clarifies our doubt completely and finds López in relations with these people.”

El Chapo is currently serving a life sentence in U.S. federal custody. He was sentenced to life by a Federal District Court in Brooklyn for his drug, murder, and money laundering charges.

READ: El Chapo’s Daughter Is Using His Name And Face to Launch A Beer Brand After She Launched A Fashion Line

Google Launches Faces Of Frida So You Can Pass The Time Learning About The Artist’s Life

Culture

Google Launches Faces Of Frida So You Can Pass The Time Learning About The Artist’s Life

Google

Few artists have reached the level of fame as Frida Kahlo. The Mexican painter is more than an artist. Kahlo is a point of cultural pride that transcends nationality within the Latino community and unites Latino art lovers in their le of Latin American art. Now, Google, in the time of self-isolation, is giving everyone a chance to learn about the iconic painter.

Google wants to give everyone a chance to learn about Frida Kahlo with its online “Faces of Frida” exhibit.

Credit: Google

Anyone who visits the “Face of Frida” exhibit can browse through the artist’s incredible paintings. Kahlo is one of the most influential artists the world has ever known. Her fame and people’s admiration continue to this day with tributes still appearing around the world for the Mexican artist.

Viewers can decide which museum’s Frida Kahlo collection they want to explore.

Credit: Google

The exhibit is made possible by 32 museums from around the world collaborating to show Frida Kahlo’s impressive and iconic works of art. Museums across four continents shared Kahlo piece from their exhibits with Google to create an exhibit showing more than 800 paintings. Some of the museums include Museo Frida Kahlo in Mexico, Los Angeles County Museum of Art in the United States, Nagoya City Art Museum in Japan, Fundación MAPFRE in Spain, and Buenos Aires Graffiti in Argentina.

The interactive exhibit is perfect for all Frida Kahlo and art lovers alike. While 3.4 billion people in the world are on lockdown orders, the incredible virtual exhibit of Kahlo’s work gives people a chance to see works of art they haven’t been able to visit yet.

The exhibit is easy to navigate and some of Kahlo’s works have been collected into their own themed galleries.

Credit: Google

Kahlo is most famous for using her own life as the inspiration for her works of art. The artist often played with the themes of pain and death due to her own near-death experiences. Her tumultuous relationship with Diego Rivera influenced Kahlo’s work depending on where they were in their relationship. The couple was notorious for taking extra-marital lovers throughout their marriage.

“Faces of Frida” also offers art fans a chance to learn about Kahlo through editorial features.

Credit: Google

Kahlo was one of the most revolutionary women in the world. She moved through space unimpeded by society’s views on her gender and place in society. She was politically engaged and held onto a list of values that many still argue over today. Namely, there have been discussions and think pieces about the sudden commercialized usage of Kahlo’s image and what she might have to say about it. As someone who was opposed to capitalism, it seems safe to say she might not have appreciated herself being used for capitalistic gains.

You can visit “Faces of Frida” by clicking here.

READ: This LA Play Explores The Mystery Surrounding Frida Kahlo’s Death, Her Love Affairs, And Her Passion For Art