Remains of missing Mexican student identified – reports

Remains of missing Mexican student identified – reports
At least one of the 43 Mexican student-teachers missing in the southern state of Guerrero has been identified from charred remains found near a landfill, confirming the investigation’s assessment that the missing group has been murdered.

The identified remains belong to 19-year-old Alexander Mora Venancio, a number of sources said Saturday. His DNA was identified via a DNA sample of bone fragments found in the garbage dump where the bodies were burned, a Facebook post of the teaching school attended by the students announced.

"Today Austrian specialists confirmed to my father that the remains were me," said a post on the Facebook page, written in the first person of Mora.

Felipe de la Cruz Sandoval, a father of a surviving student, confirmed that Mora was identified through DNA evidence found in Cocula's river, VICE reported. The researchers were able to recover human remains in a landfill and the riverbank and sent a sample to a prestigious university laboratory in Innsbruck, Austria for identification.

The positive identification was confirmed by anonymous Mexican officials speaking to AFP and Reuters on condition of anonymity.

Earlier some of the victims’ families rejected the Mexican government’s version that their children were butchered by a drug cartel and continued to insist that their children are alive.

"Now we know that these are our children," Nardo Flores, the father of another of the missing students, told Reuters. "All we can hope now is that justice is done, and that the government punishes those responsible."

The students from the Ayotzinapa Teacher Training College went missing in the town of Iguala, in the southern Mexican state of Guerrero, on September 26, following a protest to support the rights of rural teachers.

There are claims they were killed by members of the Guerreros Unidos gang, and their bodies were later incinerated to hinder any investigation. The mayor of Iguala has been named as the possible mastermind behind the abduction, after tree Mexican gang members confessed to killing the students on the mayor's orders.

Allegedly, the mayor and his wife asked the gang for assistance because the protests interfered with their political campaign. Corrupt police officers allegedly detained the protesting students and handed them over to the gang.

The fruitless search for the students sparked outrage across Mexico, unleashing a wave of anti-government protests across the country, including the capital, Mexico City. Many protesters blamed corruption within the Mexican state for the disappearance of the students.