Parres, Mexico City's first mass grave
The Parres El Guarda is located in the outskirts of Mexico City - Photo: File Photo/EL UNIVERSAL

Parres, Mexico City's first mass grave

David Fuentes
Mexico City
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An inhabitant said that criminals have moved into the area, bearing arms in broad daylight

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The community of Parres El Guarda is located in Mexico City, in the border between the Tlalpan borough and the state of Morelos. Despite being part of the metropolitan area, the community is not protected by the police and has been besieged by illegal loggers and organized crime.

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EL UNIVERSAL launched an investigation and found that there are no surveillance cameras around the areas closer to the city of Cuernavaca.

Moreover, its geographical location allows Parres to become the perfect place for crime, where criminals illegally cut trees, hide from authorities, set up narco labs, and even used it to create a mass grave; furthermore, the bodies of the last three murder victims registered this year where found in the area,

What is more, official numbers show that between January and November 2019, at least 21 bodies where found in the Parres area. From the 21 victims, only 7 were identified and their bodies delivered to their families after they all went missing one day.

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The victims' families looked for them at hospitals, forensic offices, other areas, organized protests, and even looked for their bodies in the Parres area, but were unable to find them in the forest.

According to local authorities, 16 victims died as a result of wounds caused by firearms. Also, 10 victims were women; in some cases, the victims have been already identified and it is known that the attackers kidnapped the women in the city, sexually abused them, murdered them, and abandoned their bodies in the Parres area.

An inhabitant told EL UNIVERSAL that Parres is “nobody's land, we're nor from Morelos, nor Tlalpan. [Parres] is owned by criminals, they hide here, they come and leave dead bodies here, there are armed people, strangers from the state of Mexico, Tepito, Tláhuac, and Ajusco come here to rent or buy homes because they know there is no surveillance here, they are in control and we can't do anything, there are no surveillance cameras, no police cars.”

Mexico City authorities have yet to solve the problem and provide security for the inhabitants of the Parres El Guarda community.

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Searching for missing persons

After news spread about the bodies found in Parres, the relatives of people who have gone missing are planning, independently, a search in the area; nevertheless, fear has stopped their efforts. They requested police support but they have been ignored.

The inhabitants refuse to help in the search for bodies because they fear they could be targeted by criminals.

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