Another Mexican Attorney General Quits Under Calderón Weeks After Wikileaks Cable

Mexican Attorney General Arturo Chávez Chávez has resigned, a government official said Thursday, weeks after the release of diplomatic cables that highlighted infighting among Mexico's top security officials.

President Felipe Calderón was expected to announce the departure later in the day, said the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he wasn't authorized to disclose the information.

Chávez is the second attorney general to resign under Calderón, who took office in December 2006. He was appointed in 2009 after the departure of Eduardo Medina Mora, one of the main architects of Calderón's crackdown on drug trafficking and organized crime. More than 34,600 people have been killed since Calderón's administration launched the campaign shortly after he became president.

U.S. Embassy officials in Mexico City found Chávez's appointment to be "totally unexpected and politically inexplicable," according to diplomatic cable from September 2009 posted by WikiLeaks three weeks ago.

The cable noted that Chávez, former top prosecutor in the border state of Chihuahua, "has strong detractors within the Mexican human rights community" because of botched prosecutions in the murders of women in the 1990s in Ciudad Juarez, a violent city across the border from El Paso, Texas.

The cables also suggest that diplomats favored the head of federal police, Genaro García Luna, in the bureaucratic turf battle between the Attorney General's Office and the federal police.

It also suggested that Chávez "is a less capable political operator, who will be overshadowed by García Luna and stymied by his considerable human rights baggage."

Calderón said last month that the allegations of infighting and division "have done a lot of damage."

Based on reporting by the Associated Press.

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