The big question about why 43 missing Mexican students were abducted remains unanswered, but a new international report on the case suggests more than ever that the government's version of events is a joke. Investigators with the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights say Mexican police tortured key suspects into false confessions, and the group's report provides the most comprehensive account to date of the night of "confusion, terror and helplessness" in 2014 when the students disappeared. The government maintains that corrupt local police in the city of Iguala took the students off buses and turned them over to a local gang that killed them and incinerated the bodies, but students' relatives say the government is trying to protect senior politicians and army officers, reports the AP.
About 100 teacher trainees set out that night with a plan to steal buses, described as a kind of tradition that was "mostly tolerated" by the bus companies, and use them to transport students to a protest, reports the New York Times. "All of us were happy, having a blast, relaxed, happy with the drivers, playing," recalls one student. Then came chaotic chases by police, gunfire on the open road, and extensive roadblocks. The driver of one bus that was stopped says officers ordered students off and into police vehicles, warning, "We're going to kill all of you." Those students are among the 43 missing. Witnesses say state and federal police officers and military intelligence were at the scene. But who ordered all this? The take by the BBC: "We are no closer to knowing what really happened that night, but one thing's for certain: The credibility of the Mexican government is more in doubt than ever." (More Mexico stories.)