The Law for the Search of People in Puebla was approved on August 24th in the  Local Congress, but without considering the petitions of the disappeared people's relatives.

The victims' relatives pressured, they made a sit-in, and went to The National Palace in Mexico City with their petition document , among different activities that they performed.

One of the achievements was that the representatives worked in the verdict, which was modified in detail for The United Committees on the Procuration and Administration of Justice and Human Rights.

After that, they gathered in a special session with the purpose of vote to approve it. The result was 37 votes in favor, 0 votes against, and 0 attainments.

Picture by Rodrigo Peña
Picture by Rodrigo Peña

Relatives of disappeared people point deficiency

The Collective Voice of disappeared in Puebla pushed The Law of Searched for Disappeared People in Puebla which was prepared based on their experience searching their family members -in the light of deficiencies and the areas that they recognized need to be improved in order to find those they are looking for- as well as in conjuctions with the Ignacio Ellacuria S.J Human Rights Institute (IDHIE, abbreviation according the meaning in Spanish).

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However, they accuse that the local Congress did not take into account their proposals and only worked with the initiative sent by Luis Miguel Barbosa, Puebla's governor.

They considered that "the law could have been better", because the initiative the collective and Ibero ellaborated, was created based on the expierences of those who have been searching for their loved ones and that is precisely what they are seeking to improve.

Picture by Rodrigo Peña
Picture by Rodrigo Peña

The Collective Voice of disappeared in Puebla had -mainly- five requests, together with 82 collectives and organizations, for the Representatives to take into account. before voting on the ruling:

1 Modify the name of the initiative. They mention that facing a problem begins by recognizing it, and in order to recognized it, it must be named. "The draft opinion of the Law of Searched for Disappeared People of Puebla makes the phenomenon of the disappearance of people invisible in the title proposed for the law", they say.

2 Subject the actions of all authorities involved in the law to the Guiding Principles of Searched for Disappeared People approved by the United Nations Committee on Enforced Disappearances. In the opinion they mentioned only once and only for training purposes, not to ensure that the authorities conduct themselves in accordance with them, they said.

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3Guarantee the greatest protection with respect to the right of family members to participate, particularly in the process of appointing the head of the Search Commission, in the formation of the working groups to be coordinated by this organization, in the formation of the Citizen Council, in the chapter on the search for persons, and in the catalog of rights recognized by the project.

4Recognize basic rights of direct and indirect victims. Specifically, the presumption of life in the case of a disappeared person, and the right to be treated with dignity, as well as the right to respect customs and traditions when locating and handing over corpses and human remains, in the case of family members. Additionally, they wanted to incorporate multidisciplinary forensic guidelines for human identification.

5Create a specific fund to combat the phenomenon of the disappearance of persons in the state, committing a percentage of the state budget for this purpose. The public budget exists to attend the needs and public problems of the population. "We are facing a tragedy that not only demands will, but also strong institutions", they reiterate.

They sit- in, so far

Since July 15th the Collective Voice of Disappeared in Puebla stayed in a sit- in with the purpose of demanding that the law was approved before the end of the year, however, they have not defined yet, if they will remain there or if they will leave the place.

"We are going to continue working. It was not as we wanted, but it is a step we managed to take and that is significant to us (...) Now, we are going to sit down to talk with our leader, Maria Luisa Nuñez, to see what steps we are going to follow, but the fight does not stop", declared Marisela Rodríguez Hernández, of the collective, who is looking for her daughter Karina Jazmín Alducín Rodríguez.
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In an interview with Poblanerías, Marisela Rodríguez commented that there will be a march for the International Day of the Victims of Enforced Disappearances, to be commemorated next Monday, August 30, although the schedule will be defined, as well as other activities.

 

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POB/RPC