Seattle Freedom for Nestora committee joins protest at Mexican Consulate on one year anniversary of disappearance of students from Ayotzinapa. The protest was called by Mexicanos Unidos en Washington.
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Salgado returned to her hometown of Olinala, Mexico and took a leadership position in a community police force to address the growing level of crime, until she was arrested on charges of kidnapping. The arrest took place after the group arrested a town official on suspicion of theft. Salgado’s supporters say the community police force was sanctioned by the state, and that her arrest is politically motivated.
According to local newspaper Proceso, six witnesses against Salgado failed to appear in court to testify on the state charges against earlier this month.
“They didn’t show up and she cannot defend herself,” said Alejandra Gonza, a professor at the University of Washington School of Law who is helping Salgado with her case.
Salgado’s husband, Jose Avila, says that Salgado, 43, wants to face her accusers.
“She feels kind of angry. The state government (of Guerrero) says, ‘We have these victims.’ But when it comes time for court, nobody shows up,” Avila said.
“If you’re a victim, don’t you want to tell your story to the judge?” he said.
But while the absence of witnesses might get a case dismissed in the United States, the judge in Salgado’s case postponed the hearing, said co-counsel Thomas Antkowiak, a professor at the Seattle University School of Law. Salgado’s next court date is scheduled for Aug. 31.
“She hasn’t been convicted of anything — this is all pre-trial and she’s been in detention for two years,” Antkowiak said.
CALL: State Department press officer
Ask when John Kerry will issue a statement regarding Nestora’s incarceration.
Actions are also planned in several U.S. cities, including Aug. 21 rallies at Mexican Consulates in Los Angeles at 5 PM, San Diego at 7 AM and Seattle at 11 AM, plus a week-long series of events in Chicago where Nestora’s daughter, Grisel Rodriguez, will be speaking.
Solidarity actions are also planned in Mexico City and a large march will be held in Chilpancingo, the capital of Guerrero.
For more updates, follow our Twitter @free_nestora.
KPBS has released their coverage of the protest at the San Diego Mexican Consulate on Monday. The entire article is worth reading, but the end is especially powerful.
Felix Garcia, a San Diego resident in his 60s who strummed on his guitar and song revolution-era songs outside of the consulate, hadn’t eaten in more than three days.
“I feel weak and hungry, but my conviction is stronger,” he said.
Garcia said he looks up to Salgado because of her defense of indigenous communities in Guerrero, one of Mexico’s poorest states.
“She represents resistance. Liberty. Freedom,” he said.
Acción en Solidaridad con Nestora Salgado, presa política en México
On June 1, 2015 supporters held demonstrations at Mexican consulates in cities across the United States in an effort to raise awareness of Nestora Salgado’s imprisonment. Photos and details about the events in San Diego, Seattle, San Francisco, New York City, and Chicago follow.