Below is a sign-on letter to oppose additional U.S. funds to the Merida Initiative for the disastrous drug war. We have already received an incredible response from all over the Hemisphere. We believe this is a critical juncture, as homicides and human rights violations increase in Mexico and citizens in both countries reject militarization as a strategy to weaken organized crime. This week is the fourth anniversary of the murder of journalist Brad Will, a classic case of impunity in Mexico. We urge you to join us and the hundreds of organizations and individuals listed below in signing this statement. The movement against the drug war enforcement/interdiction approach is getting stronger in light of the history of failure and enormous cost in lives and resources that it entails. It is unconscionable that the US government continues to support it. This is the time to make our voices heard.
Friends of Brad Will Action Alert
Dear Friends and Supporters,
Please read, take action, and spread the word!
As you may know, on February 18, 2010, Juan Manuel Martínez Moreno – the Oaxacan social activist falsely accused of the 2006 murder of Indymedia reporter Brad Will – was released after 16 months in prison. This is an important victory, but Martínez Moreno, his family, and other activists remain at risk.
Since his release, Martínez Moreno and his family have been subjected to constant harassment. They have received death threats and the government-linked paramilitaries which eyewitnesses and photographic evidence tie to the murder of Brad Will have frequently been seen standing outside the Martínez Moreno home.
February 18, 2010 – From Casa Chapulin – Juan Manuel Martinez Moreno, husband and father of three children, was released from prison for wrongfully being accused for the killing of Indymedia journalist Bradley Ronald Will. Will was shot on October 27, 2006 by paramilitary troops under the orders of governor Ulises Ruiz Ortiz while he was recording a mobilization in Santa Lucia del Camino, Oaxaca during the 2006 APPO movement.
Amidst the clouds and rainy day, the Martinez Moreno family was greeted by community members, teachers, friends, and media. Family and friends marched from the prison to the Zocalo. Juan Manuel was imprisoned for approximately 16 months without any solid evidence or witnesses proving him guilty.
Four Foreigners Detained without Justification in Oaxaca, Mexico on Thursday January 28th 2010
Oaxaca — January 30, 2010
On Thursday January 28, at around 9 p.m. Andrea Caraballo, Guadalupe Rodriguez Lopez, James Wells and Jennifer Lawhorne were eating ice cream in the zocalo of Oaxaca. At that time, one of us recognized the face of the governor of Oaxaca who was about nine feet away from us. As a friend of Brad Will, a U.S. journalist who was killed in Oaxaca in 2006, one of us took advantage of the governor’s presence to ask him about the case of Mr. Will, which to this day remains unresolved. We didn’t receive a response from the governor who continued walking and we continued strolling in the zocalo with our ice creams. Five minutes later, between six and eight police agents, some in official uniform and others dressed in plainclothes, surrounded us, demanding to see our identifications and made us walk with them to a municipal police truck. While the police forced us to get into the back of the truck, we asked them why they were taking us away and to where they were going to take us. The police refused to give us any information. We were actually very afraid and worried for our safety.
by Jenka, KBOO.fm
A Mexican judge has once again called for the release of human rights activist Juan Manuel Martinez Moreno. Moreno was charged with the murder of Indymedia journalist Brad Will in 2006, despite the fact that there was no evidence against him. On December 31, 2009, a Mexican judge recognized this lack of evidence, and ordered Moreno’s release within fifteen days.
Supporters of Juan Manuel Martinez Moreno say that he was framed for the murder because he is an activist who has pointed out corruption in the Mexican government. Several off-duty Mexican police who were caught on film shooting at Brad Will have not been charged with any crime. This past October, another judge ordered Moreno to be released due to lack of evidence, but the Mexican Attorney General’s office appealed the order. Moreno has been in jail for over a year, despite the fact that over one hundred eyewitnesses say that he was not present at the scene of Brad Will’s murder.