Urgent Request Demand the Safe Release of Three Family Members of Slain Juárez Activist, Josefina Reyes
Today in the town of Reforma in the municipality of Guadalupe, Valle de Juárez, Magdalena Maria Reyes, Elías Reyes and his wife, Luisa Ornelas Soto, were taken from their pick-up truck and kidnapped and we fear for their lives.
Magdalena Maria and Elías are siblings of the activist Josefina Reyes who was threatened for her activities against militarization and later assassinated in Valle de Juárez (see Background). Ruben Reyes, another brother of Josefina, was also assassinated several months ago. It should be noted that the town where the kidnapping took place is located in a zone controlled by the Mexican military.
We must be alert to see what we can do to make sure they are rescued alive. For now, it is urgent to get the word out, denounce the kidnapping and demand of the authorities the immediate appearance of Magdalena Maria Reyes, Elias Reyes and Luisa Ornelas Soto alive.
Please send the letter below that is reproduced here in English:
I write to urge you to do everything in your power to locate Magdalena Maria Reyes, Elías Reyes, and his wife Luisa Ornelas and if they are idetained to charge them with a recognized offense or release them immediately,
As you know, on 7 February, Magdalena Maria Reyes, Elías Reyes and his wife Luisa Ornelas were abducted in Guadalupe Distrito Bravos municipality in the Valle de Juárez, east of Ciudad Juárez in Chihuahua state. The three were traveling in a truck together with Sara Salazar, the mother of with the mother of the Reyes siblings, Sara Salazar, and Josefina Reyes’ daughter. Armed men stopped the truck and forced Salazar and her young granddaughter to get out of the vehicle. They then drove off with Magdalena Maria Reyes, Elías Reyes and Luisa Ornelas, leaving Sara Salazar and the child on the side of the road.
Due to the history of attacks on this family we also urge that you provide immediate protection for remaining family members of the three missing persons, in accordance with their wishes.
We also reiterate the call for a full, prompt, transparent, and impartial investigation into the killing of Josefina and Rubén Reyes.
As you also know, Elías Reyes and Magdalena Maria Reyes are the brother and sister of Josefina Reyes who was shot and killed on 3 January 2010 by unidentified gunmen. Since 2008 Josefina Reyes had been active in protests against the violence in the area by organized crime, and human rights violations committed by members of the military. In August 2009, she participated in a Forum on Militarization and Repression (Foro Contra la Militarización y la Represión) in Ciudad Juárez, to protest at increasing human rights violations committed by members of the military. Rubén Reyes, another brother of Josefina Reyes, was shot dead on 18 August 2010 on his way to buy food by his home in Guadalupe Distrito Bravos municipality. The investigation into both killings must publically clarify those events and brings those responsible to justice.