Authorities in western Mexico say they have found the body of anti-mining activist Higinio Trinidad de la Cruz
Higinio Trinidad de la Cruz. [Credit: X/@EmilioAlvarezI]
The Associated Press
November 26, 2023
MEXICO CITY -- Authorities in western Mexico said Sunday they have found the body of anti-mining activist Higinio Trinidad de la Cruz.
Prosecutors said De la Cruz’s body was found on a rural road in the state of Jalisco near the border with the neighboring state of Colima. They said de la Cruz appeared to have been shot to death.
The community group Tiskini said in a statement that de la Cruz had been abducted on Saturday.
The group said he was an environmental and community activist in the Jalisco town of Ayotitlan. De la Cruz had opposed both illegal logging and iron ore mining that have altered the environment of the rural community.
Jalisco state prosecutors said they were investigating the crime, but Tiskini called on federal prosecutors to take on the case.
The group also demanded protection for the inhabitants of Ayotitlan, saying it is “a community under siege by drug cartels that are plundering its lands and natural resources through illegal mining and logging.”
It is common in Mexico for cartels to participate in or profit from such activities.
Crimes against activists in Mexico are depressingly common.
Last week, an activist who documented murders in one of Mexico’s deadliest cities was himself killed.
Adolfo Enríquez was killed in the city of Leon, in north-central Guanajuato state. The city has the third-highest number of homicides in Mexico, trailing only the border cities of Tijuana and Ciudad Juarez.
For years, Enríquez has posted a simple, moving tally of each murder in Leon, writing just hours before his death that “murder number 55 in Leon so far in November just occurred in the Margaritas neighborhood.”
He himself became murder victim number 56 late Tuesday, local police and state prosecutors confirmed, without providing details on the attack.
Six volunteer search activists who looked for disappeared relatives have been killed in Mexico since 2021.
According to a 2022 report by the nongovernmental group Global Witness, Mexico was the deadliest place in the world for environmental and land defense activists in 2021, with 54 killed that year.
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