The Mexican government announced in August that since 2006, when it took up its war against the drug cartels operating in the country, the number of its citizens that had gone missing was just over 22,000. Human rights groups counter that the figures underestimated the extent of the kidnappings by thousands.
The actual number aside, the frequency of disappearances in Mexico has surpassed humanitarian crisis proportions, with tens of thousands of families left wondering what happened to their loved ones. The government, all the way up to President Enrique Peña Nieto, was recently forced to confront the extent of the situation as it scrambles to find 43 students who went missing in the state of Guerrero over a month ago.
While filming Fault Lines' latest episode, “The Disappeared,” correspondent Teresa Bo and her team took multiple trips to Mexico to meet with families whose relatives had vanished. (The film airs Saturday, November 1, at 7 pm Eastern time/4 pm Pacific on Al Jazeera America.) The crew listened to many stories and heard many pleas for justice from the families of the disappeared.
What follows are the tales of some of the people who live under the uncertainty of not knowing where some of their closest family members are—or whether they’re even alive.
In "The Disappeared," Fault Lines examines the disappearances of thousands of citizens in Mexico, one of the worst humanitarian crises in Latin America. The film airs on Al Jazeera America Saturday, November 1, at 7 p.m. Eastern time. It will air again that evening at 10 p.m. Eastern and Sunday, November 2, at 2 a.m. Eastern.