Sunday, January 24, 2016

As Frustrations With Mexico’s Government Rise, So Do Lynchings

By AZAM AHMED and PAULINA VILLEGAS, NYT, JAN. 23, 2016

AJALPAN, Mexico — The lynching began around 7:20 p.m., not long after the brothers had finished conducting their final interviews on tortilla consumption.

Residents confronted them, mistaking the pair for kidnappers. The police confirmed that the men were, in fact, pollsters for a marketing company and whisked them to safety. Irate residents rang the church bells in the town square anyway, summoning hundreds.

The mob then stormed the arched doorways of the government center, set fire to its library and snatched the brothers from the police. Finally, a man in a motorcycle helmet calmly walked into the center of the frenzied crowd, doused the semiconscious brothers with gasoline and lit a match.

A grisly cellphone video of the episode played for days on local news media last fall, eliciting condemnation and hand-wringing. Officials blamed the crowd and rumors that kidnappers were taking children off the streets. One local official suggested that it was the opposition party making trouble.

(More here.)

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