– Simultaneously deliver 13,455 signatures collected through the platform Change.org/justiciaparaAngel at the Mexican Consulates in Atlanta, Miami, Houston and Chicago in the USA; in addition to the National DIF and the representation of the government of Nuevo León in Mexico City.
– In Nuevo León, meetings were held with DIF, the office of the Attorney General of Nuevo León and the Human Rights Commission of Nuevo León.
– The NGOs request a meeting with the governor of Nuevo León, Samuel García, in order to facilitate the investigation and guarantees of non-repetition.
Friday April 8. Two months after the death of child Manuel Moreno, 14 years old, who lost his life on February 9 in unclarified circumstances and due to complaints of mistreatment at the facilities of the National System for the Integral Development of the Family (DIF Fabriles), located in the state of Nuevo León, various civil society organizations in Mexico and the United States demand that the Mexican State clarify the alleged irregularities committed around his death and the immediate cremation of his body.
In a simultaneous action, organizations promoting and defending human Rights for children and migration in both countries showed up at the offices of Nuevo León Representation Office in Mexico City, the office of the Attorney General of the State of New León and at the Mexican consulates in Atlanta, Miami, Houston and Chicago, to request a thorough and transparent investigation to reveal the causes of the death of Ángel. This demand for justice also has the support of another 13,455 people, who signed the petition on the Change.org platform and whose signatures were also delivered to the authorities.
In Mexico, Tania Ramírez Hernández, Executive Director of the Network for Children’s Rights (REDIM), headed the delegation that presented a letter to the Attorney General of the State of Nuevo León, Gustavo Adolfo Guerrero Gutiérrez; Miguel Ángel Sánchez Rivera, head of DIF Nuevo León; and Ivette Mecott, Executive Secretary of the National System for the Protection of Children and Adolescents in Nuevo León (SIPINNANL).
Meanwhile in Mexico City, Juan Martín Pérez García, Coordinator of Tejiendo Redes Infancia in Latin America and the Caribbean, as well as representatives of Change.org and REDIM had meetings with María del Pilar Lozano Mac Donald, Head of the Representation of the State of Nuevo León in Mexico City, and later on with officials of the National DIF. A working meeting was requested with the Governor of Nuevo León, Samuel García in order to facilitate the investigation and guarantees of non-repetition.
In the United States, human rights coalitions and civil society organizations joined the action and delivered the letter and signatures to the consulates of Mexico in Miami, Chicago, Atlanta and Houston. The organizations that participated in the demonstration were Durango Unido and the Chicago Religious Leaders Network for Latin America (CRLN); Living Hope, American Friends Service Committee (AFSC), Seeds of Resistance, Alabama Transnational Women’s Collective Latino Aids Coalition and Alianza Americas.
All in one voice demanded #JusticiaParaÁngel as well as guarantee of protection.
to the rights of children who are under care of the Mexican State and especially the guarantee of non-repetition of acts of violence that harm girls, boys and adolescents who live in any of the DIF public institutions located in the country.
Ángel Manuel Moreno: Review of boy’s death in DIF Nuevo Léon, México
Ángel, who suffered from a disability, had been under the tutelage and protection of the State since he was four years old. According to sources cited by the journalist Víctor Badillo, who announced his death for the first time, the boy allegedly lost his life as a result of the continuous beating by a state official named Raymundo and also due to the alleged misadministration of sedatives. The testimonies of the people who dared to denounce affirm that the boy was already dead when the ambulance arrived.
However, the official version that was released two weeks after Angel’s death said that “he died” “after presenting various stomach issues” due to an “acute septic shock of the abdomen” that “caused the unfortunate death,” the official said on Twitter. The Press Office in Nuevo León (@OficinaCOMNL), whose account on the social network was created days after Ángel’s death and the sudden and immediate cremation of his body were announced in the press.
It is important to highlight that the incineration of corpses in Mexico can only be carried out with the authorization of the corresponding Vital Records official, who must demand the presentation of the death certificate, in accordance with the provisions of article 348 of the General Health Law and in which the causes of the death must be stated. Given the possibility of a violent death, bodies should not be cremated.
However, the most recent complaints about acts of violence in these public spaces controlled by authorities continue to be the expression of a recurrent institutional failure and omission committed especially against children and adolescents with disabilities and/or who are part of the street populations that arrive to these places, in Mexico, where they suffer a double violation of their rights. Angel’s case is an example.
Before his death, Ángel had been transferred from the DIF Capullos to the DIF Fabriles, the latter intended for the care of migrant children and with a history of abuse. The reasons for his relocation were due to an alleged fight between a group of children and DIF personnel, which occurred on November 28, 2021, and whose events are related to alleged complaints of mistreatment committed at DIF Capullos.
It must also be remembered that this situation in the DIF Capullos provoked the intervention of the Human Rights Commission of Nuevo León, who established precautionary measures on the operational capacity of the place, where in August of last year seven adolescents also escaped due to alleged mistreatment. Therefore, Ángel’s transfer was carried out even under the precautionary measures of the Human Rights Commission of Nuevo León.
For these reasons, the signatory organizations join the concern expressed by the Committee of the Organizations of the United Nations, after examining the situation in Mexico, which recommended carrying out “an exhaustive investigation of all the deaths of children and adults with disabilities in all institutions since the previous concluding observations of the Committee (2014) in close consultation with persons with disabilities and with their active participation through their representative organizations”, as indicated in the conclusions of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD).
Equally worrying is the atmosphere of fear in this case; Witnesses and possible victims in said shelter must have all the protection guarantees of the State in this case to be able to give their testimonies without fear of reprisals and thus advance in the investigations and clarification of Ángel’s death.
In the same way, we condemn the silence of the authorities on the case and request that the measures expressed in the REDIM statement, on February 21, related to the protection of the child and adolescent population be applied urgently:
- To inform about the integrity and protection of the hundreds of girls and boys sheltered in the DIF Capullos and in the DIF Fabriles;
- Establish measures to protect the integrity and to manage the mourning towards the more than 200 children and adolescents who remain in the Fabriles shelter;
- The Government must inform clearly any information related to previous illness (and not to his disability condition), which may have caused the death of the child Ángel Manuel Moreno at the DIF Fabriles facilities;
- Directors of the Fabriles and Capullos DIF shelters, must be dismissed form service while the corresponding investigations are carried out;
- Attorney General’s Office of the state of Nuevo León must guarantee that the investigations are carried out with a focus on children’s rights; as well as report on the progress of the investigation, guarantee the chain of custody of the evidence of the reported facts and create favorable conditions so that the people who have more information about the case can express without fear;
- Offer security guarantees and facilities so that the personnel of DIF Fabriles and DIF Capullos centers can offer testimony before the CEDHNL and the Prosecutor’s Office without fear of reprisals;
- The Human Rights Commission of Nuevo León must provide a report on the follow-up to its request for precautionary measures, issued on December 1, and the progress regarding the irregularities in the death of Ángel;
- The National DIF System and its Child Protection Office must initiate an investigation on the reported irregularities and the measures to restore the rights of the hundreds of children and adolescents in the shelters managed by the DIF Nuevo León.
Red por los Derechos de la Infancia en México (REDIM).
Tejiendo Redes Infancia América Latina y el Caribe
Durango Unido en Chicago.
La Red de Líderes Religiosos de Chicago para América Latina (CRLN).
American Friends Service Committe (AFSC)-Florida.
Seeds of Resistance (Semillas de Resistencia).
Colectivo Mujeres Trasnacionales.
Alabama Latino Aids Coalition.
Aldeas Infantiles SOS México.
Fundación Juconi México A.C.
Visión Mundial de México A.C.
Save the Children.
Ciudadanos en Apoyo a los derechos humanos, A.C. CADHAC.
Arthemisas por la Equidad, A.C.
PERMA: Cultura en Resiliencia A.C.
Ciudadanía Lagunera por los Derechos Humanos, A.C.
Pro-Salud Sexual y Reproductiva, A.C.
Instituto de Justicia Procesal Penal A.C.
Instituto Nacional de Consultoría Familiar A.C.
AVANCE Por los Derechos de México A.C.
Familia Digna A.C.
Tribuna de Vigilancia Ciudadana A.C.
Servicios de Inclusión Integral y Derechos Humanos A.C. (SEINAAC).
Inclusión Ciudadana A.C.
Hogar Justo Hogar.
Melel Xojobal A.C.
Vientos Culturales A.C.