Estimado Sr. Presidente Andrés Manuel López Obredor, President of the Republic of Mexico
Sr. Fiscal Alejandro Gertz Manero, Attorney General of Mexico
January 25, 2019
We are saddened and horrified by the murder of human rights defender Sinar Corzo Esquinca inArriaga, Chiapas. At 9:45pm on January 3, he died instantly close to his home when unidentified men on a motorcycle shot him in the head at close range.
Sinar Corzo Esquinca was a member of the El Coloso de Piedra (Stone Colossus) Citizen Committee for the Defense of Human Rights. He was recognized for his defense of the right to water, health, security and basic services for citizens of diverse communities. He worked for reconstruction from damages caused by the earthquake of September 7, 2017. During that time he received threats from armed men because of his support for a rural road project. Hours before his death on January 3, he met with municipal authorities in Arriaga to discuss issues related to the construction of La Linea highway and the improvement of fishing communities.
On January 4, the day after the assassination, over 100 human rights organizations, including Fray Bartolome de Las Casas Human Rights Center, released a statement condemning previous death threats that Sinar Corzo Esquinca had been receiving from officials of both the state government and the city of Arriaga. We were glad to learn on January 17 that the Fiscalía General de Chiapas (Public Prosecutor’s office) had detained three suspects in the assassination, including the father-in-law of David Parada Vázquez, Mayor of Arriaga.
Because of our concern for the fragile situation in which human rights defenders find themselves in the state of Chiapas, we strongly urge that you
- conduct an exhaustive and impartial investigation into the murder of Sinar Corzo Esquinca (which includes finding the intellectual authors), publish the results, and bring those responsible to justice;
- implement precautionary measures to protect the family of Sinar Corzo and the members of El Coloso de Piedra, in strict accordance with their wishes
Brian J. Stefan Szittai
Christine Stonebraker Martínez
Martha Bárcena Coqui, Mexican Ambassador to the US ~ via email
John S. Creamer, Chargé d’Affairs, US Embassy in Mexico ~ via fax and US mail
Political Officer, Mexico Desk, US State Dept ~ via email
Esmeralda Arosemena de Troitiño, Rapporteur for Mexico, Inter-American Commission on Human Rights ~ via email
Antonia Urrejola,Rapporteur on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, Inter-American Commission on Human Rights ~ via email
S!Paz ~ via email
US Senators Brown & Portman
US Representatives Beatty, Fudge, Gibbs, Gonzalez, Johnson, Jordan, Joyce, Kaptur, Latta, Ryan ~ via email