MEXICO CITY (AP) - Mexico's congress has passed a law to recognize and protect the rights of crime victims. That has been a longstanding demand in a country where more than 47,500 people have died in 5Â½ years of drug-related violence and thousands more have disappeared.
The law covers the dead, wounded, kidnapped or missing whether they are ordinary civilians or are members of drug cartels and other crime gangs.
The measure has now been approved by both houses of congress and must be signed into law by the president, who supports the move.
The law passed Monday will establish a national registry of victims and set aside funds to compensate them. It requires authorities to make efforts to identify crime victims' remains or locate those who may still be alive.