Many believe that Calderón’s drug policies have been imposed by the US, which provides aid under the Mérida Initiative
For the Guardian by Luis Hernandez Navarro
Tuesday 14 June 2011
Cipriana Jurado is a Mexican activist who for years struggled to assert the rights of maquila workers in Ciudad Juarez on the US border. She directed the Centre for Research and Worker Solidarity until, in mid-March 2010, she took refuge in the United States and applied for asylum because her life was in danger. On Saturday 11 June 2011, the United States granted her political asylum.
Her asylum application was accepted on the basis of evidence that the Mexican army persecuted her after she sought to defend a family from which three members, including two women, disappeared in Chihuahua in late 2009. The Mexican army has been used in Chihuahua as part of the federal anti-drug strategy, and it has been repeatedly linked to human rights violations.
Cipriana Jurado is the first human rights defender to receive political asylum for being persecuted by the Mexican army – the same army the United States is supporting to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollars in the war against drugs.
Her asylum sets a precedent. It also illustrates the complex relations between Mexico and the United States in the war on drugs.
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