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Website documents Mexico human rights abuses

Yemeli Ortega
People hold posters of disappeared students during a protest in Mexico city, on September 26, 2015, to commemorate the first anniversary of Ayotzinapa school students disappearance (AFP Photo/Ronaldo Schemidt)

Mexico City (AFP) - A website documenting notorious cases of human rights abuses in Mexico was launched Tuesday but activists voiced concern that the authorities withheld a trove of documents, pictures and videos.

The website, www.memoriayverdad.mx, is a project by the Iberoamericana University, three non-governmental organizations and the governmental national transparency institute, or INAI.

After a year of work, the website documents 14 cases that have marked Mexican history, including the army's deadly repression of student protesters in 1968, the massacre of 72 migrants by a drug cartel in 2010, and the disappearance of 43 students at the hands of corrupt police in 2014.

The INAI managed to declassify some information.

But academics and activists complained that the institute did not pressure the government to declassify more information and that it decided last week to withhold information it had previously committed to making public.

"The system of access to public information in Mexico has not worked to guarantee the right to the truth," said Denise Gonzalez, director of the human rights program at the Iberoamericana University.

Ana Cristina Ruelas, regional director of the media rights group Article 19, said the INAI "is afraid and is "part of the political system of secrecy."

INAI president Ximena Puente defended her institute, saying it also has the "delicate" responsibility of protecting "personal data."