WS: MEXICO: THE FIGUEROA CASE

Created: 7/19/1974

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Weekly Summary

MEXICO: THE FIGUEROA CASE

Th? all-out hunt for guerrilla leader Lucio Cabana* has turned up nothing after three weeks. The search, involvingrmy troops as well as units from the other two military services, was launched in an effort to kill Cabanas and rescue Senator Ruben Figueroa. the gubernatorial candidate kidnaped by Cabanas on

Th* government mounted Ihe operation, concentrated in the highnorthwest of Acapulco in Guerrerofter receivingdemands from Cabanas that it termed "impossible" to meet. Government officials have expressed little hope the army will find Figueroa alive. Some army officials believe that Cabanas may have left the area during the nearly four-week period before troops were sent in. Also, an operation on this scale has never been tried before and the lack of adequate long-rangeis apparent. Bad weather and rugged terrain have further complicated the search. President Echeverria reportedly is considering posting the military units involved to Guerrero on abasis, but financial constraints may not allow it.

Pressed by th* Figueroa case to comment publicly on the country's guerrilla problem. Echeverria and other government spokesmen have fallen back on answers clouded byMexican "revolutionary" traditions and myths. Guerrillas are not working forinterests. Echajverna says, but are trying

to provoke regressive tendances. He claims that guerrilla terrorism "appears to be more the work

The government's inclination toroblem with slogans will not ease the situation, and sporadic violence is likely to continue for some time. For the immediate period, guerrillas may try to embarrass Echeverria while he is on his South American trip this month. This may have been tho motive behind the bombings this week at both party and military headquarters in Guada-

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