A tranquil memorial to Mexican ex-president Luis Echeverria

MEXICO CITY – The remains of former Mexican President Luis Echeverria were cremated Sunday after a silent memorial service.

Mourners were few for Echeverria, blamed for some of Mexico’s worst political killings of the 20th century.

Juan Velásquez, the attorney who defended Echeverria, said a memorial service for the ex-president was held at a funeral home on Saturday and his remains were cremated on Sunday.

Echeverria died at one of his homes late Friday at the age of 100. Current President Andrés Manuel López Obrador confirmed the death on Saturday. In his Twitter account, López Obrador gave no cause of death for Echeverria, who ruled from 1970 to 1976.

Friends and allies suggested that Echeverria should be remembered for his attention to foreign policy and expansion of domestic programs and state-owned companies. Echeverria presented itself as a friend of left-wing governments.

“Echeverria has done a lot for Mexico,” Velásquez said. “For example, when Echeverria took office, Mexico had diplomatic relations with 50 countries, and when he left there were 150.”

But Echeverria’s successors later had to reverse much of his government expansion because his ambitious public spending programs left Mexico deeply indebted.

Most remembered, however, was what became known as the Tlatelolco Massacre.

On October 2, 1968, just weeks before the Summer Olympics in Mexico City, government snipers opened fire on student protesters in Tlatelolco Square, followed by soldiers stationed there. Estimates range from 25 to over 300 dead.

Echeverria had denied any involvement in the attacks, although at the time he was Minister of the Interior – the highest post in state security.

In June 1971, during Echeverria’s own tenure as president, students from a teachers’ college west of downtown made their way in one of the first large-scale protests since the Tlatelolco massacre.

They got no further than a few blocks before they were attacked by plainclothes thugs who were actually government agents, who beat or shot at least a dozen people.

In 2005, a judge ruled that Echeverria could not be tried on genocide charges stemming from the 1971 killings, saying that while Echeverria may have been responsible for the murder, the statute of limitations on that crime expired in 1985.

In March 2009, a federal court upheld a lower court’s decision that Echeverria did not need to be charged with genocide for his alleged involvement in the 1968 student massacre and ordered his release, though opponents of Echeverria noted that the case against him was never closed .

“It seems to me very early to pass judgement, and unfortunately the memory of Don Luis has been contaminated by these unfortunate events,” Velásquez said.

For decades after leaving office, Echeverria refused to accept any responsibility for the massacres.

“He has long delayed the inevitable process of democracy that began in 1968,” said Félix Hernández Gamundi, a leader of the 1968 student movement who was in Tlatelolco Square on the day of the massacre. “October 2nd marked the beginning of the end of the old regime, but it was many years after that.”

It was only in 2000 that the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) of Echeverria, which ruled Mexico with an iron fist for seven decades, had to admit its first defeat in a presidential election.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/a-quiet-memorial-for-mexican-ex-president-luis-echeverria/2022/07/10/2e8fdd8a-0086-11ed-8beb-2b4e481b1500_story.html?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=referral&utm_campaign=wp_world A tranquil memorial to Mexican ex-president Luis Echeverria

Dustin Huang

24ssports is an automatic aggregator of the all world’s media. In each content, the hyperlink to the primary source is specified. All trademarks belong to their rightful owners, all materials to their authors. If you are the owner of the content and do not want us to publish your materials, please contact us by email – admin@24ssports.com. The content will be deleted within 24 hours.

Related Articles

Back to top button