MEXICO CITY (AP) – The UN human rights office in Mexico demanded on Wednesday that justice be done in the case of an activist who was shot dead on 23 January in the southern state of Oaxaca.

Fidel Heras Cruz opposed the construction of hydroelectric dams on the Verde River and, according to the UN office, had received death threats two days before he was assassinated.

Heras Cruz was shot in the vicinity of the town of Jamiltepec, Oaxaca, near Puerto Escondido. The office said that seven activists were killed in 2020 in Mexico, and that the fact that crimes remain unpunished makes activists more vulnerable.

The perception that it is possible to murder defenders of human rights and thus weaken activism, “such as the defense of the territory and the environment, is strengthened with each murder that remains in impunity,” Guillermo Fernández-Maldonado, representative in Mexico of the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights.

Heras Cruz presumably also opposed the extraction of gravel, stones and sand from the river bed, a lucrative but damaging activity.

In September, Mireya Rodríguez Lemus was found dead with traces of violence in the northern state of Chihuahua. Rodríguez Lemus was the founder of a group defending the rights of transgender people and promoter of an education and prevention campaign. on AIDS.

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