Supreme Court Blocks Transfer of National Guard to Military

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Mexico’s Supreme Court (SCJN) on Tuesday, April 18, blocked the transfer of the National Guard (GN) to the National Defense Secretariat (Sedena), a controversial move proposed by leftist President Andrés Manuel López Obrador (AMLO) and approved by his majority National Regeneration Movement (Morena) party through Congress in September 2022.

In an eight-to-three vote, the SCJN determined that the transfer of the GN to Sedena violated the Mexican Constitution’s Article 21, which states that all public security institutions, including the National Guard, must remain as civil entities.

The National Guard, which was created by AMLO to replace the federal police force, was until late last year under the Public and Citizen Security Secretariat (SSPC).

The SCJN decision established that the 2019 constitutional reform to create the GN was categorical in establishing that it was to be of a civil nature and must be attached to the SSPC.

It also stated that the Sedena and Naval Secretariat had been granted only a transitory participation in the formation of the GN, which cannot be extended beyond 2028.

Justices Javier Laynez, Luis María Aguilar and Juan Luis González Alcántara described AMLO’s 2022 reform to incorporate the GN into the military as “a fraud against the constitution,” while Arturo Zaldívar, one of the three dissidents and a faithful yes-man to AMLO, said that he had been the first to use that term in the court  and said that it was now being used “frivolously” by the conservative wing of the SCJN.


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