It’s been three years since the “mysterious” disappearance of 43 students from the Ayotzinapa Rural Teachers’ College in Iguala, Guerrero, Mexico. On September 26, 2014, a group of students commandeered several buses to travel from Guerrero to Mexico City to commemorate the anniversary of the 1968 Tlatelolco Massacre. During the journey, local police intercepted them and confrontation allegedly ensued. It’s still not clear what happened, but 43 of them were allegedly taken to the police headquarters and that was the last anyone heard from them.
The official investigation concluded that once the students were in custody, they were handed over to the local “Guerreros Unidos” (United Warriors) crime syndicate and presumably killed. Mexican authorities claimed Iguala mayor, José Luis Abarca Velázquez, and his wife María de los Ángeles Pineda Villa, masterminded the abduction. They both fled after their involvement was revealed, but were arrested a month later in Mexico City. Iguala’s police chief, Felipe Flores, remains a fugitive. Other reports state that Federal forces are involved with the kidnapping, either directly or just by choosing to ignore helping the students in distress.
The mass kidnapping of the students led to the resignation of Angel Aguirre Rivero, the Governor of Guerrero and it became the biggest political and public security scandal Enrique Peña Nieto, Mexico’s president, has faced during his term. Three years after the mass kidnapping, at least 80 suspects have been arrested in the case, of which 44 were police officers. Two students have been confirmed dead after their remains were identified by the Austria-based University of Innsbruck. Scroll through the photos and remember the fight to solve one of Mexico’s biggest mysteries: What happened to the 43 Ayotzinapa students?