December, 11th, 2017.- The El Mozote case has become known as the most violent episode in the modern history of Latin America. Approximately 1,000 people were executed by the Salvadoran armed forces in December 1981, during the country’s civil war. More than half of the victims were children and adolescents. The terror and the physical and emotional injury suffered by the victims and their families, as well as the lingering effects of these crimes, have spurred international outrage and demands for an end to three decades of institutional neglect.
In September 2016, after amnesty law was declared unconstitutional by the Constitutional Chamber of the Supreme Court of Justice, and at the insistence of the victims, a judge reopened the criminal proceeding regarding this case. This historic action rejuvenated hope in the Salvadoran justice system. And yet, despite some progress, the government still hesitates to provide relevant military information and to detain army officers who have been formally charged with criminal responsibility. After more than a year with modest advancement, some have questioned whether or not the government has a serious commitment to delivering justice for these crimes.
Now 36 years after the massacre, international experts and academics call on the Salvadoran institutions to act decisively and efficiently in order to resolve the El Mozote case.
The letter urges political powers to show their commitment to work towards an end to this painful legacy of impunity as thousands of Salvadoran victims, supported by the international community, demand truth and justice today. Read the letter here