dorset chiapas solidarity

January 31, 2014

Farewell Compañero Kuy!

Filed under: Repression — Tags: — dorsetchiapassolidarity @ 11:29 am
RvsR: Farewell Compañero Kuy!

With profound sadness and indignation we have found out about the death of our compañero Francisco Kuykendall, el Kuy. His death is an absence in our lives and in our struggles.

On January 25th, 2014 our compañero Francisco Kuykendall Leal died. His death is the consequence of the impunity with which the police behave. On December First, 2012, exercising his right to assemble, and going along to perform a play in the vicinity of the Congress of the Union, a teargas grenade was fired by the Policía Federal Preventiva directly at Kuy’s head. Those responsible remain free, surely committing crimes against more social fighters.

Since that December First the brutality of the local police, not only in Mexico City, and federal police was clear. That Enrique Peña Nieto, Andrés Manuel López Obrador, or Josefina Vásquez Mota had been in their ascension to power in this hurt and wounded Mexico has no connection, that politics already was planned by the strong pressure from great national and transnational capital. From there the tremendous and brutal repression of that December first, from there which since that day practically any public protest is heavily guarded, and more that a few times repressed, no longer by police, but by uniformed hordes; since that day the rise in selective detentions, with ridiculous accusations, are currently something common.

We know the damages which that teargas grenade provoked. The resistance of our compañero was sustained for more than one year, aches, fevers, infections, seizures, it is true, but also smiles, handshakes, and lively looks were part of this last resistance process of our compañero.

Today we are left with, yes, sadness, but before all else rage. All those responsible for his murder are unpunished: Enrique Peña Nieto, Manuel Mondragón y Kalb, the armed beast who fired at him, without forgetting that the still mayor of Mexico City Marcelo Ebrard, coordinated his hordes with the federal ones.

This affront against social struggle, against the adherents to the Sixth Declaration of the Lacandon Jungle, must remain in our collective memory. This crime committed against a compañero who decided to arm himself against injustices with theatre and performance, and offer his solidarity with his art, we will not forget. From below and to the left we seek justice for the life of a compañero who was set on making this world something more just, free, and democratic.

May Kuy be certain that each member of this Network will continue to construct with determination a non-capitalist world whose cements are the below and the left from where we are and who we are.

¡Hasta siempre compañero Kuy, hasta siempre!

Against plunder and repression:


Red Contra la Represión y por la Solidaridad


Translated from Spanish by Henry Gales
Originally published on January 27th, 2014

Death of activist Kuykendall qualifies as murder

Gloria Leticia Díaz

Proceso, 27th January, 2014

Following the death of activist Juan Francisco Kuykendall on Saturday, January 25, Amnesty International (AI) demanded of the relevant authorities “a full and impartial investigation” as well as of “other abuses on December 1, 2012 [day of Peña Nieto´s inauguration] which ensure that people responsible be accountable to justice.”

AI made the statement after learning that Kuykendall died from the consequences of a rubber bullet shot in the head received during the crackdown on demonstrators on December 1, 2012, outside the Chamber of Deputies in San Lazaro.

Kuykendall, a native of Tamaulipas, a teacher, playwright and theatre director, “was in critical health since December 1, 2012,” the organization recalled, warning that although there are indications that the shots against the protesters, one of which struck Kuykendall, came from the federal police, “the authorities have not clarified the circumstances surrounding the serious head injury suffered” by the activist.

The organization, based in London, England, highlighted that it has been especially critical “regarding the growth of abuses against protesters by police forces in Mexico recorded over the last 18 months, including arbitrary arrests and police brutality.”

It noted that although the Federal District government accepted the recommendation issued by the local Human Rights Commission, by those facts “no agent charged with protecting the public order has been brought to justice.”

As to the gun that fired the bullet that wounded Kuykendall, AI noted that it is considered one of the “less lethal” police weapons, among which are “rubber bullets and tear gas,” weapons which the organization said “does not exempt the security forces of their obligation to respect the principles of necessity and proportionality in the use of force and accountability when the use of these weapons has been a harm or risk to the health or safety of a person, especially when they are used improperly or in a context in which it is not possible to ensure that projectiles will not impact protesters directly.”

The organization insisted that the authorities are obliged to report on the use of such weapons, the training received by police that use them, and use protocols. “Amnesty International also calls on the authorities to subject any use of force by security forces to international human rights standards,” the organization stated.

Reiterating the urgent need for those responsible for injuring Kuykendall to pay for their deeds, Amnesty International called on authorities to be accountable for a commitment that “the police are properly trained” and that they adhere to international standards on the use of “less lethal” weapons.

Daughter Speaks

Minutes before Amnesty International disseminated its statement, Fernanda Kuykendall, daughter of the activist revealed that the Public Prosecutor has initiated an investigation into the murder of her father. “Finally, the MP (Public Ministry) determined that it was a homicide, and the authorities will have to clarify the facts (…) It’s on the death certificate,” Fernanda said to Radio Formula.

The daughter of the playwright said that during the time that her father was alive, for a year and almost two months, he was at home for only 15 days, and the rest of the time he lived in various hospitals. Because the rubber bullet Kuykendall that received caused an exposed skull fracture with loss of brain tissue, the damage to the activist was basically neurological, and his physical condition deteriorated progressively. …

In January 2013, the family of the activist and playwright filed a criminal complaint against the violence suffered by Juan Francisco Kuykendall at the hands of the Mexican government and in particular against Enrique Peña Nieto, Manuel Mondragón y Kalb, current commissioner for National Security, and Miguel Ángel Osorio Chong, Secretary of Government Relations [SEGOB].

The Human Rights Commission of the Federal District (CDHDF) lamented the death of Kuykendall, whom it described as a social activist, who participated in the 1968 student movement and had supported social causes since 1970, as well as being an actor who wrote and presented works of a social character to inform and raise awareness about social and political realities.

Regarding the last mobilization in which he took part, on December 1, 2012, the agency recalled that it had documented in its recommendation of July 2013, “arbitrary detentions, disproportionate use of force, cruel, degrading and inhuman treatment, and torture and violations of due process for 102 people who were arrested that day in the vicinity of St. Lazarus and the centre of the city.”

Translation by Reed Brundage


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