Hautala Urges to Remember Oaxaca in Plenary

To Jerzy Buzek, President of the European Parliament, May 5th 2010[:]

Dear President,
on April 27, 2010, a humanitarian caravan of international observers, journalists, and social activists was on its way to monitor the human rights situation of indigenous people in the State of Oaxaca in México. Near the village of San Juan Copala, they were violently attacked by an armed group. Two people were killed: the Mexican human rights defender Bety Cariño Trujillo, of the Centro de Apoyo Comunitario Trabajando Unidos (CACTUS), and an international human rights observer from Finland, Jyri Jaakola.

The authorities of the State of Oaxaca had been informed previously about the caravan and had been asked to protect it. However, the authorities remained absent, and even refused to enter the area after the attack.

It is the first time that an international human rights group is violently attacked in Mexico and that an international observer is assassinated.

As President of the Sub-Committee on Human Rights, I am deeply worried about this deterioration of the situation and the lack of guarantees for the necessary work of human rights defenders.

I would kindly request to mention this violent incident at the beginning of the EP plenary session on May 5, 2010, offering our condolences to the Finnish and the Mexican families of the victims and urging the Mexican authorities to fully investigate into what happened and bring the responsible to justice.

Thank you very much in advance

Heidi Hautala