Drug War a Ruse for Human Rights Violations by Mexican Government
March 20, 2012
By Virginia Isaad for El Nuevo Sol de California State University, Northridge
Saúl Reyes Salazar, 43, lived as a baker in Mexico until the violence of the drug cartels led to the loss of six family members and his family’s move to the US under political asylum.
Since President Felipe Calderón declared war on the drug cartels in March of 2008, more than 60,000 civilians have been killed and according to Reyes Salazar, it is the military gunning down protestors and those in opposition of the government.
“We are not drug dealers, hit man nor do we have anything to do with organized crime but Calderón offends the memory of all those who died by saying they are criminals,” said Reyes Salazar.
In 2009, his nephew Julio César Reyes was killed with the military merely 300 feet yet no action was taken and on January of the following year, Reyes Salazar’s sister, Josefina Reyes was killed after protesting her son’s death. The family continued to protest and on August 18, his brother, Rubén Reyes Salazar was killed.
“We didn’t remain silent despite the fact that three of our family members were killed,” said Reyes Salazar. “We continued demanding justice and on February 7 they kidnapped my brother, sister and my sister-in-law.”