Activist priest criticizes church and state officials in Veracruz

Catholic priest and social justice activist Alejandro Solalinde Guerra, who has described Veracruz as Mexico’s biggest graveyard, denounced both politicians and church officials for crime and complicity yesterday during a visit to the state.

Solalinde came down hard on Catholic bishops for remaining silent before crimes committed over many years by organized crime gangs and officials with the last two state administrations.

“Before God they shall have to state the favors they received from those two scoundrels, [governors] Fidel Herrera Beltrán and Javier Duarte de Ochoa,” he declared.


Governor Yunes and Solalinde at a meeting with families of the disappeared.
Governor Yunes and Solalinde at a meeting with families of the disappeared. (PHOTO:


Solalinde’s was one of the first voices raised in warning about mass graves in Veracruz, and some have since been found. But there’s more — and worse — to come, he said.

At least 300 bodies have been found in hidden graves during recent excavations, but “they’re nothing compared with what’s to come.”

“The largest [mass graves] have yet to be found in [the municipalities of] Coatzacoalcos, Acayucan, Tierra Blanca, Orizaba and Córdoba. There are caves there used to store bodies.”

The human rights champion and operator of a migrants’ shelter in the state of Oaxaca lamented that disappearances and executions in Veracruz have claimed the lives of innocent people, and that many migrants have been among them.
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