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Great News from Guatemala

Human rights defender Yolanda Oquelí who was shot for her activism around the development of a mine has been granted protection.
December 4, 2012
Yolanda Oquelí

We received the good news on September 27 that human rights defender Yolanda Oquelí, who survived being shot in June because of her community activism around the development of a mine, has finally been granted protection by the Guatemalan state.

A huge thank you to the many thousands of Amnesty International members who signed a petition over the summer months demanding this protection for Yolanda and her family.

Yolanda and her children will now have an armed guard with them day and night for the next six months.Previously the family has been in hiding, while Yolanda was recovering from painful injuries suffered during the attack on her life.

What’s more, other family members close to Yolanda also now have protection.

The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights had ordered these precautionary measures for Yolanda and the Guatemalan government agreed to them on September 18.

The attack on Yolanda took place as she was driving home along an isolated stretch of road. Two men on a motorbike cut across her path fired at her with a pistol. She was hit by a bullet which lodged close to her liver. Three other bullets hit her vehicle.

The Guatemalan government is required to report back in October to the Human Rights Commission on the progress of its investigation into the attack on Yolanda.

Please continue to press the Guatemalan government to investigate and bring those responsible to justice.