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UA 223/91 - El Salvador: death threats / harassment: members of popular organizations and others

, رقم الوثيقة: AMR 29/008/1991

EXTERNAL (for general distribution) AI Index: AMR 29/08/91
Distr: UA/SC
UA 223/91 Death Threats/Harassment 1 July 1991
EL SALVADOR: Members of popular organizations, and others
Amnesty International is concerned at a wave of death threats and other forms
of harassment directed against members of popular organizations, political
groups and foreign workers over the last two months. The following are among
the cases reported to Amnesty International:
- The Instituto de Investigación, Capacitación, Desarrollo de la Mujer "Norma
Virginia Guirola de Herrera", IMU, the "Norma de Guirola de Herrera" Institute
for Women's Research, Training and Development, reported that their offices
were under constant surveillance at the beginning of June by men in plainclothes.
An IMU worker was followed by two vehicles, and at least two threatening
telephone calls were received at the office in the name of a group calling
itself Condor. In one of the calls, IMU leader Nora García was warned she
would be executed if she didn't leave the offices within 25 days. In another
telephone call, IMU was accused of having foreigners with them who "disrupt
the country and are against ARENA" (the ruling party.)
- At the beginning of June, a group calling itself the Frente Anticomunista
Salvadoreño, FAS, Salvadorian Anticommunist Front, circulated a pamphlet
threatening all Salvadorian businesses which provided services to international
organizations working in the country including United Nations bodies, the
International Committee of the Red Cross and the French medical organization,
Médecins sans Frontières. The businesses were warned that reprisals would
be taken against them if they did not stop collaborating with organizations
linked to communism who were trying to take over the country. The Defence
Minister reportedly announced that the threats would be investigated in order
to guarantee the safety of members of international organizations working in
El Salvador. Days earlier, FAS is reported to have issued a similar leaflet
threatening members of opposition groups and their families whom they accused
of being fronts for the armed opposition movement.
- In June also, René Flores, Legislative Assembly deputy for the Convergencia
Democrática, Democratic Convergence party, and secretary general of the
Movimiento Nacional Revolucionario, MNR, National Revolutionary Movement,
reported receiving an unsigned letter in a Treasury Police envelope warning
him that he and his family would be killed, after he had criticised the government
on television. Two other MNR leaders reported receiving telephone calls
threatening them with death. The caller identified himself as an "Angel of
Death". A caller identifying himself as an "Angel of Death" also issued death
threats against members of the Comité de Familiares Pro-Libertad de Presos
y Desaparecidos Políticos de El Salvador, CODEFAM, Committee of Relatives for
the Release of Political Detainees and the Disappeared of El Salvador, in May.
Amnesty International has documented a pattern of intimidation against
groups and individuals perceived by the authorities as sympathising or having
links with the armed opposition in El Salvador. The intimidation is often
carried out in the guise of "death squads" which Amnesty
International believes to be linked to, or operating with, the acquiescence
of the military. The intimidatory acts serve to maintain a climate of
insecurity and fear, particularly as the threats are issued against a background
of serious human rights violations such as extrajudicial executions and torture.
page 2 of UA 223/91
RECOMMENDED ACTIONS: Telegrams/telexes/faxes/airmail letters:
- expressing concern at recent death threats and other forms of harassment
against members of IMU, CODEFAM and other popular organizations as well as
against foreign workers and those who have links with them;
- urging that an immediate investigation be carried out and those responsible
be brought to justice;
-urging that steps be taken to ensure that women's groups and other popular
organizations can carry out their work without threat to their physical
security.
APPEALS TO:
S.E. Alfredo Cristiani Burkard Sr. Presidente
Presidente de la República
de El Salvador
Casa Presidencial
San Salvador
El Salvador
Telegrams: El Presidente, San Salvador, El Salvador
Telexes: 20245 RS SAL
20522
20809
Faxes: + 503 71 0950
Dr. René Hernández Valiente
Ministro de Justicia
Ministerio de Justicia
Av. Masferrer No. 612-b
Colonia Lomas Verde
San Salvador, El Salvador
Telegrams: Ministro Justicia, San Salvador, El Salvador
Telexes: 20179 RREE SAL
20599 RREE SAL (via Foreign Ministry)
COPIES TO:
FUNSALPRODESE Señores
Apdo Postal 1952
San Salvador, El Salvador
CODEFAM (Social development agency)
Urbanización la Esperanza Señores
Pasaje No.1, No 116
San Salvador, El Salvador
Convergencia Democrática Señores
21a Ave. Norte 1315
Colonia Laico
San Salvador, El Salvador
PLEASE TRY TO INVOLVE WOMEN'S GROUPS/POLITICAL GROUPS IN THIS ACTION.
PLEASE SEND APPEALS IMMEDIATELY. Check with the International Secretariat
or your section office if sending appeals after 12 August 1991.

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