Guerrero: Twenty years since the Aguas Blancas massacre, justice is demanded

July 2, 2015



28 June marked 20 years since the murder of 17 campesino members of the Campesino Organization of the Southern Sierra (OCSS) and the injuring of 23 others by Guerrero state police. To date, no one has been arrested for the massacre that left behind widows and orphans and led to the resignation of the state governor. Over the course of these years, the relatives have demanded justice for the murder, but the only advance in the case was the resignation of Guerrero state governor at the time, Rubén Figueroa Alcocer, from the PRI.

In 2008, the defense counsel for the widows of Aguas Blancas, José Sánchez, submitted to the Secretary for Governance a motion in which he requests the speeding-up of the investigations and the reconstruction of the acts involving the ambush of the campesinos. “There are no advances in the investigation being carried out by the Federal Attorney General’s Office against Figueroa for these acts. The case has not been referred to a federal judge, and no sentence has been made. This genocide continues to go unpunished, with no compensation for the victims,” the lawyer lamented.

About a thousand people marched on 28 June in Aguas Blancas, Coyuca de Benítez municipality, to commemorate the massacre and to continue demanding justice. This commemoration brought together the struggles of Ayotzinapa and Aguas Blancas. There were claims made, as well pain and activist calls shared between the social movements, in addition to condemnations over the lack of results and ongoing injustice.

For more information (in Spanish):

Marchan en Coyuca a 20 años de la matanza de Aguas Blancas (La Jornada Guerrero, 29 de junio de 2015)

Recuerdan la masacre de Aguas Blancas (La Jornada, 29 de junio de 2015)

Aguas Blancas, un genocidio que aún espera justicia en México (CNN México, 28 de junio de 2015)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Guerrero: 18th anniversary of the Aguas Blancas massacre (19 July 2014)

Guerrero: 17th anniversary of the Aguas Blancas massacre (10 July 2012)

Guerrero: Solidarity marches 16 years after the Aguas Blancas massacre (17 July 2011)

Guerrero: Solidarity marches 16 years after the Aguas Blancas massacre

July 17, 2011

Place of the massacre @ La Jornada

On 28 June was commemorated the 16th anniversary of the massacre of 17 campesinos at Agua Blancas.  On that day in 1995, more than 60 campesino-members of the Campesino Organization of the Sierra del Sur (OCSS) who were traveling in two trucks on the highway were intercepted in Aguas Blancas by agents of the Judicial Police of the state of Guerrero.  They were forced to leave the trucks and lie down.  In this moment, police began to open fire, killing 17 persons and gravely injuring many others.  The OCSS campesinos were traveling to Atoyac de Álvarez to demand the presentation with life of their comrade Gilberto Romero Vázquez, who had been disappeared since 24 May 1995.

In observation of this massacre, militants from civil and campesino organizations engaged in simultaneous marches in Coyuca de Benítez and Acapulco, crying “Justice! That the intellectual authors be punished.”  Different social organizations also marched on the morning of 28 June from the community of Aguas Blancas, Coyuca de Benítez, Guerrero, to the zone of the tragedy.

“16 years later we know that ex-governor Rubén Figueroa Alcocer finds himself still here in Guerrero; he lives here and has not been bothered by the present government.  All governments that have had power since the massacre have failed to do justice,” said Benigno Guzmán Martínez, director of OCSS.

Representatives of social organizations that participated in the Aguas Blancas forum entitled “10 years of impunity” carried out in Coyuca de Benítez concluded that true justice has not been had, nor has the recommendations handed down by the Supreme Court of Justice in the Nation or those of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights or the National Commission on Human Rights (CNDH) been observed in the least.

Ángel Aguirre, governor of Guerrero, has agreed to install a Truth Commission in the state regarding this case and others related to forced disappearances.  Regardless, the creation of this commission has aroused ire among the majority of social organizations and those of relatives of the disappeared in Guerrero due to their not having a legal basis to act juridically, given that what is needed is a prosecutorial office with legal capacity directed by civil society.

For more information (in Spanish):

Piden justicia a 16 años de masacre en Aguas Blancas, El Universal, 29 June 2011

Campesinos piden al gobierno de Guerrero resolver masacre de Aguas Blancas, CNN México, 29 June 2011

La matanza de Aguas Blancas cumple diez años de dolor e impunidad, La Jornada, 29 June 2011

Justicia, reclaman en aniversario de la matanza de Aguas Blancas, La Jornada Guerrero, 29 June 2011

Con caminata, recuerdan en Guerrero matanza en Aguas Blancas, La Jornada, 28 June 2011

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Guerrero: PGJE requests 50 years for Raúl Hernández (11 August)

Guerrero: Briefs: Detention of FODEG member, Raúl Hernández received threats and announcement of the commeoration of the massacre at Aguas Blancas (30 June 2010)

Guerrero: 2nd anniversary of the imprisonment of Raúl Hernández (23 April 2010)