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UA 418/90 - Guatemala: fear of "disappearances": Maria Tiu Tojin and her one-month-old baby daughter

, رقم الوثيقة: AMR 34/062/1990

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EXTERNAL (for general distribution) AI Index: AMR 34/62/90
Distr: UA/SC
UA 418/90 Fear of "Disappearance" 15 October 1990
GUATEMALA: María TIU TOJÍN
Amnesty International is concerned at the apparent "disappearance" of
María Tiu Tojín, a peasant, after she was reportedly detained by the
Guatemalan army in mid-September 1990.
According to the information received by Amnesty International,
in mid-September 1990, the Guatemalan army detained 86 peasants belonging
to the Comunidades de Población en Resistencia (CPR), Communities of
Peoples in Resistance, including women and children, in the Amacchel
area, Nebaj District, in the Department of El Quiché. They were first
reportedly taken to the Nebaj military base, from where they were
transferred to the refugee reception centre of the Comisión Especial
de Atención de Refugiados (CEAR), Special Commission for the Care of
Refugees, a governmental refugee organization, in Nebaj.
However, according to some of those arrested, María Tiu Tojín and
her one-month-old daughter Josefa, who were among those detained, were
separated from the rest of the group, as the military authorities accused
María of being a member of a guerrilla organization, and were not
transferred to CEAR. Relatives who went to the Nebaj military base
searching for her were told by the military authorities that she was
not being held there; however, sources close to the military authorities
have told her family that María Tiu Tojín and her baby are detained in
the Nebaj base. A writ of habeas corpus was filed on María Tiu Tojín's
behalf, but her whereabouts remain unknown and Amnesty International
fears that she may be secretly detained, tortured and may "disappear".
BACKGROUND INFORMATION
CPR members live in the mountains, having fled army repression because
of their refusal to do service in the ostensibly voluntary Patrullas
de Autodefensa Civil (PAC), Civil Defence Patrols, and to live in
army-sponsored "model villages", created as part of the army
counter-insurgency campaings in the early 1980s. People living in the
CPRs have been accused of being guerrilla collaborators by the army and
targeted for human rights abuses. The Guatemalan Constitution, which
recognizes the right to freedom of association, states that no one may
be forced to serve in self-defence groups. The authorities maintain the
civil defence patrols are voluntary, but Amnesty International knows
of scores of cases where peasants who have not wished to do patrol service
or have tried to withdraw from them, have been labelled "subversives"
by the army and subjected to harassment, death threats, "disappearance"
and extrajudicial execution.
María Tiu Tojín's sister, Victoria Tiu Tojín, was repeatedly
threatened to death in March and April 1990 because of her denunciation
of human rights violations in Parraxtut, El QuicDepartment, including
the killing of their relative María Mejía (see UA 130/90, AI Index AMR
34/25/90 and its follow-up, AI Index AMR 34/30/90).
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RECOMMENDED ACTION: Telegrams/telexes/faxes/express and airmail
letters:
- expressing concern at the apparent "disappearance" of María Tiu Tojín
and her baby daughter;
- urging the authorities to establish their whereabouts and legal
situation;
- expressing concern that María Tiu Tojín may be tortured and asking
for guarantees for her safety and the safety of her daughter.
APPEALS TO
S.E. Vinicio Cerezo Arévalo
Presidente de la República de Guatemala
Palacio Nacional
Guatemala, Guatemala
Tel: +502 22 1212, +502 22 2266
Fax: +502 253 7472
Telex: 5331 CAPRES GU
Telegrams: Presidente Cerezo, Guatemala, Guatemala
Brig. Gral. Juan Leonel Bolaños
Ministro de Defensa
Ministerio de Defensa
Palacio Nacional
Guatemala, Guatemala
Tel: +502 22 1212, ext 2226
Fax: +502 253 7472
Telex: 5361 COMGUA GU, 5361 COMGUA GU
Telegrams: Ministro Defensa Bolanos, Guatemala, Guatemala
Commander of Nebaj Military Base,
Destacamento Militar de Nebaj
Nebaj
El Quiché, Guatemala.
Telegrams: Nebaj Military Base Commander, Nebaj, El Quiche,
Guatemala
Lic. Mario Roberto Yllescas Aguirre
Procurador General de la Nación
Procuraduría General de la Nación
7a Avenida 7-78
Edificio Centroamericano
Zona 4, Guatemala
Guatemala
COPIES TO:
Señores
Consejo de Comunidades Etnicas "Runujel Junam" (CERJ)
5a Avenida 3-13, Zona 5
Santa Cruz del Quiché
Guatemala
Diario Siglo XXI
7a Avenida 11-79
Edificio Galerias España, 6o piso
3
Zona 9, Guatemala, Guatemala
Lic. Ramiro de León Carpio
Procurador de Derechos Humanos
Avenida Simeón Cañas 10-61
Zona 2,
Guatemala, Guatemala
and to diplomatic representatives of Guatemala in your country
PLEASE SEND APPEALS IMMEDIATELY. Check with the International Secretariat,
or your section office, if sending appeals after 30 November 1990.

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