[an error occurred while processing this directive]
BBC News
watch One-Minute World News
Languages
Last Updated: Thursday, 12 July 2007, 21:46 GMT 22:46 UK
Mexico genocide trial suspended
Former President Luis Echeverria
Mr Echeverria was interior minister at the time of the 1968 killings
A federal court in Mexico has suspended the trial on genocide charges of the former President, Luis Echeverria.

He is alleged to have had a role in the killing of dozens of students during a demonstration in Mexico City in 1968.

The ex-president's lawyer said the ruling indicated there was no evidence to link Mr Echeverria to the deaths.

Mr Echeverria, who was interior minister at the time, has repeatedly denied any role in the deaths. The prosecution has 10 days to appeal.

Juan Velazquez, Mr Echevarria's lawyer told the BBC he was confident the prosecutors would accept the court's ruling, bringing the trial to an end.

'Dirty war'

Human rights groups say as many as 300 student activists were killed when troops opened fire on them in Mexico City's Tlatelolco Plaza on 2 October, just days before the city hosted the Olympic Games.

Official reports put the death toll at 25.

Mr Echeverria has repeatedly denied allegations that he gave orders for soldiers in the plaza to open fire on the anti-government protesters.

He has also disputed that the deaths constituted genocide.

Mr Echeverria was president from 1970 to 1976 during which hundreds of people died or disappeared during a campaign against leftists called the "dirty war".

The 84-year-old former president, who was placed under house arrest in November last year, is in poor health.


SEE ALSO
New warrant for ex-Mexico leader
30 Nov 06 |  Americas
Ex-leader denies Mexico massacre
06 Jul 06 |  Americas
Warrant for Mexico ex-president
30 Jun 06 |  Americas
Mexico 'dirty war' crimes alleged
27 Feb 06 |  Americas
Mexico ex-leader genocide charge
20 Sep 05 |  Americas

RELATED INTERNET LINKS
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites




FEATURES, VIEWS, ANALYSIS
Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit

PRODUCTS & SERVICES

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific