The central plaza in the city of Cuernavaca, Morelos today looks like a typical Mexican square where vendors sell snacks, raspadas and giant balloons. A banner over a shoe-shine booth still advertises the 2010 celebration of ¨100 years of Revolution.¨ But today marks a different anniversary in Mexico: it’s been one year since the Movement for Peace with Justice and Dignity emerged, demanding to end the violence of the drug war and justice for its victims.
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By Ahlam Said
Walking through Cuernavaca Plaza yesterday was like being caught between a memorial service and a celebration. Pictures of the deceased were everywhere: screen-printed on t-shirts, hanging across stone walls, surrounded by candles near Jesus and Mary statues, and even on balloons in children’s hand. Yet, there couldn’t possibly be enough space in the plaza to display the pictures of over 60,000 who have died and the 20,000 who have disappeared since the Mexico’s president, Felipe Calderón, militarized the drug war in 2006.
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Between the 27th and 28th of March, 2011, the life of Juan Francisco Sicilia Ortega, known as Juanelo ended. He was the son of the journalist and poet Javier Sicilia, whose words after his son's death inspired a national movement to end the violence in Mexico. Today, one year later, his “second family,” the one he played soccer with, rendered a tender homage to him on the soccer field of the American University of Morelos in Cuernavaca. “Let’s do what he loved the most,” urged Luis Añorve, who was probably one of his best friends. And so the ball rolled with joy.
By: The School of Authentic Journalism
This Wednesday March 28th 2012the Movement for Peace with Justice and Dignity (MPJD) will commemorate 12 months of protests and actions in Cuernavaca, Morelos. This event will seek to remember, with "pain, rage, and love", the dead, disappeared, and victims of the federal government's war against drug trafficking. Victims of the war will make offerings, and participate in indigenous and ecumenical ceremonies, performance art, poetry readings, and testimonials beginning at 11AM and continuing well into the night.
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