Human Rights and Civil Society · Transparency & accountability

Complaints filed against Mexican military personnel made public by Sedena

According to information the Secretariat of National Defense (Secretaría de la Defensa Nacional –Sedena) has published on their webpage, the institution has received the highest number of complaints and recommendations for human rights violations under the administration of President Felipe Calderón. Sedena reported that from 2006 to 2010, five of their elements have been sentenced by courts of civil jurisdiction, and a total of fifty-one troops are currently subject to criminal proceedings in military courts.

From 1990 to 2005, the armed forces received 3,452 complaints, while from 2006 to 2010 a total of 4,035 complaints have been filed in relationship to human rights violations by military personnel. Recommendations issued by the National Commission on Human Rights (Comisión Nacional de los Derechos Humanos – CNDH) in its first fifteen years of operation regarded 32 cases, while in the past five years there have been recommendations issued for 59 cases, equaling 1.46% of all complaints received by CNDH.

According to information supplied by Sedena, all 59 recommendations have been accepted. Of these recommendations, 36 of the cases are in preliminary investigation; in 7 of the cases the Military Prosecutor’s Office (Ministerio Público Militar) determined the alleged responsibility of military personnel in the facts; likewise in another 7 cases a preliminary investigation was started but no responsibility was found. In addition, administrative proceedings were initiated for 4 more of the recommendations. In military court, 51 elements (3 chiefs, 10 officers, and 38 troop members) are currently subject to criminal proceedings. Similarly, a chief, officer, and 5 soldiers have already been sentenced by military courts.


García, Gustavo Castillo. “En este sexenio, el mayor número de quejas contra abusos militares.” La Jornada. 28 Julio, 2010.

Alzaga, Ignacio. “Sedena se abre al escrutinio público; sube quejas a web.” Milenio. 28 Julio, 2010.

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