Missing Mexico students: Iguala eyewitness account

Pictures of Raul Isidro Burgos students, who have been missing since last month's deadly clashes The 43 students were all training at a college in Ayotzinapa to become teachers

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The search continues in Mexico for 43 students who have been missing since 26 September following clashes with the police. Omar Garcia is one of the students who witnessed the deadly clashes in which six people died. Here he describes what he saw that evening and what he thinks may have happened to his 43 fellow students.

We were coming from the centre of Iguala and the police started to follow us.

We stayed on the bus, acting normally, but a little further on, the police overtook us.

Omar Garcia Omar Garcia witnessed the recent events in Iguala

Then they got out of their cars and started to shoot into the air and shouted at us to get out of the bus.

When that happened, we asked ourselves: "What is happening? What is wrong with the police?"

Nobody had ever done something like this to us before.

Those who could get out of the bus, got out. They started to talk to the police and tried to calm them down.

But the police just responded with more force and started to shoot again.

At first they shot at the students' feet to try to get them back into the bus. Then they shot straight at the buses - at the windows, the doors, the tyres - injuring lots.

One of the people they shot was badly injured and is now in hospital in a vegetative state.

We really don't know why the police acted in this way - when they started to shoot, some students got out and tried to run for cover.

Those still on the bus stayed where they were. From what we could see, the police caught more than 30 students, took them to the police cars and took them away.

There were a few of us who managed to run away - to get away from the shootout. About 30 or 40 of us managed to escape.


We watched from a few metres' distance - we saw that they were taking away the other students but we couldn't help them because the police were armed and were shooting at anybody that came close.

People hold candles during a vigil for the 43 students Students in Mexico City have held vigils for those still missing

Later on, some other students from the school, which is about an hour away, came to see what had happened.

We surrounded the area so that the police or other authorities couldn't come close. We didn't want anyone disturbing the evidence. We prevented people from passing through the area and we were there for about three hours.

We think the municipal police took them - what we think happened is that they kept them somewhere and then, as we say, "disappeared" them - like so many thousands of others in this country who are missing.

I'm afraid for my life but we can't worry about that now. Right now the most important thing for us is to find the students - to find them alive.

We are their fellow students and we are determined to find the 43 who disappeared.

Omar Garcia spoke to World Have Your Say on the BBC World Service

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