Latijns-Amerika magazine.
 
Lezing

Looking for the Missing

  • datum:07/12
  • tijd:16:00 - 18:00
  • locatie:Lipsius Building - Leiden Universiteit
  • adres: Cleveringaplaats, Leiden

The scale of the current security crisis in Mexico is unknown and still widening. Since almost a decade ago, Mexico became one of the countries with the most disappeared persons in the world. According to official sources, there are now more than 32 thousand disappeared people across the country. In addition, the relatives of the abducted become themselves also victims of the corruption and impunity of state authorities. Both local and international human rights organizations have urged to take immediate measures to protect the civil population, and frame the violence as a humanitarian crisis. The Mexican government has systemically failed to follow the recommendations from international agencies, including the UN and the Interamerican Court of Justice, to guarantee the life and security of Mexicans.

Reports of missing people are not followed up by the police. Hardly any research is conducted. The cases pile up now in the thousands with no clear answer or action from the authorities. As a consequence, networks of NGO’s are rising now in Mexico: parents and friends who go in search of their loved ones. They dig themselves into the ground, using their own hands to find human bones, unveiling the terrifying nature of criminal and political violence in Mexico. These NGO’s have the lead in the discovery of hundreds of mass graves in several regions of Mexico. How did these discoveries happened? Which is the role of civil society in the findings? What kind of conflicts are the disappearances indicative of?

In this session we will talk with Lucía Díaz Genao, a Mexican human rights defender. She founded the NGO “Solecito de Veracruz” and suffered from the negligence of local and federal authorities when she started to look for her family members. She has played a key role in the discovery of dozens of mass graves in Veracruz.

The session will be followed in Spanish with simultaneous translation into English. Attendants will be able to pose questions during the dialogue.