Cultura y conciencia

Dominican Republic’s Desaparecidos Are Not Forgotten

News, NoticiasNelson SantanaComment
Photo: EFE/ Orlando Barría

Photo: EFE/ Orlando Barría

By ESENDOM                   September 2, 2017 

In the Dominican Republic, relatives of the desaparecidos as well as activists, are demanding the formation of a truth commission to investigate crimes committed under dictatorial rule.

On August 26th, hundreds of people marched through the streets of the Colonial City (la zona colonial) in the capital of the Dominican Republic to demand justice for the hundreds of thousands of desaparecidos (disappeared persons) under the two dictatorial regimes that left a trail of blood during the 20th century: the Trujillo regime (1930-1961) and the Twelve Years regime (1966-1978) of Joaquín Balaguer.

Both the Trujillo and the Balaguer regimes were close allies of conservative elites in the United States government. These two authoritarian regimes targeted political dissidents and ordinary people. Among some of the disappeared were women, Haitian immigrants, afro-Dominicans, peasants, left wing activists, journalists, artists, writers, labor activists and others.

The march, led in part by the Museo Memorial de la Resistencia Dominicana (MMRD, Memorial Museum of the Dominican Resistance), was part of the worldwide commemoration of the International Day of the Victims of Enforced Disappearances which the United Nations began to observe in 2011 to highlight the plight of political persecution and state repression.