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Thousands march in silence for the disappeared in Uruguay


With a solemn attitude and carrying posters with the faces of the 197 victims whose fate is still unknown, tens of thousands of people walked the main avenue in the center of Montevideo in the so-called March of Silence.

“Where are they? The truth is still hidden. It is the responsibility of the State”, read a gigantic banner at the head of the procession, which was escorted throughout the journey by two human chains.

“Here there are people alive who were in the kidnappings and do not want to tell the truth. We want to know the truth and for justice to be done,” Chela Fontora, from the Crisol association of former political prisoners, told AFP.

The 75-year-old activist, who was holding a poster with a photo of a woman “victim of execution”, celebrated the fact that “more young people” join the demonstration every year.

The march was replicated in nearly fifty Uruguayan towns. There were also calls in Buenos Aires, Paris, Barcelona, ​​Madrid and London.

“It was the State that decided and committed these crimes. The one that keeps them hidden until today,” claimed the organization Mothers and Relatives of the Detained-Disappeared of Uruguay, the main organizer of the march, at a press conference prior to the event.

“The detailed information of all the operations of the Armed Forces, executing arm of State Terrorism, they continue to have in their possession, in their classified files,” he said.


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The Images of Silence collective, which promoted the virtual celebration of the march amid sanitary restrictions, distributed some 22,000 photographs with the faces of the victims of forced disappearances this year among the attendees.

Each photo contained a QR code that led to the particular story of the missing person.

“This is a day of resistance and struggle to find out the truth about the disappeared of the South American dictatorships, not just those of Uruguay,” Valentina Pereira, a 27-year-old library student, told AFP.

The total silence that prevailed throughout the tour was broken only at the end, when the names of the almost 200 disappeared were mentioned through loudspeakers installed in the streets.

The date commemorates May 20, 1976, when the Uruguayan legislators Zelmar Michelini and Héctor Gutiérrez Ruiz and the militants Rosario Barredo and William Whitelaw were assassinated in Buenos Aires, and the doctor Manuel Liberoff also disappeared.

According to human rights organizations, almost 200 Uruguayans disappeared during the Uruguayan dictatorship (1973-1985), the vast majority in Argentina, within the framework of the so-called Plan Condor coordinated by the military governments in the Southern Cone.

The entrance Thousands march in silence for the disappeared in Uruguay was first published in diary TODAY.

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