30 October 2012

Irma Flaquer Azurdia


Date of murder: Oct. 16, 1980 (kidnaped, then dis-appeared). Where and how kidnaped: Several men traveling in two vehicles Intercepted the automobile in which Irma Flaquer and her son Fernando were riding at around 7:30 p.m in Guatemala City. The son was shot and mortally wounded, dying later in the hospital; Flaquer was forced into a station wagon that sped off. She was never seen again, either dead or alive. It is believed she was killed that same night. Possible motives: Reprisal for her articles spotlighting political repression by the government of Gen. Romeo Lucas García, corruption of public officials and military officers, oppression of the indigenous population and violations of human rights. Suspects: No one has been formally charged, tried or convicted in the murder of Fernando Valle Flaquer or the disappearance of Irma Flaquer. No one can now be brought to trial because of an amnesty for felonies committed before 1985. There are those who believe the crime resulted from a conspiracy among the military leadership, police and the government. Violent consequences: Flaquer’s family members received anonymous death threats and some public officials warned them to forget the case and leave the country. Irregularities of the legal proceedings: Even if the government formally expressed its sadness at the supposed death of Flaquer, it offered few official resources to investigate it. The media published only official accounts of the crime for fear of reprisal. Members of the military and the government warned Flaquer’s ex-husband and daughter-in-law that they would be killed if they continued to ask for an investigation.


Place of birth: Guatemala City Age at time of death: 42 Marital status: Married in 1955 to Fernando Valle Avizpe; divorced in 1958 Children: (names and ages at time of mother’s disappearance) Sergio Valle, 23, and Fernando Valle, 24. Fernando was murdered at the time she was kidnaped. Education: Graduated with a degree in psychology after giving up law studies. Profession / occupation: Psychologist and journalist. At the time of her abduction was an editorial assistant at the daily La Nación and held various public offices. Journalism background: From 1958 worked as a freelance journalist for various newspapers and radio stations. That same year she began writing her column "What Others Don’t Say" for the daily La Hora. From 1971 to 1980 she wrote that column for La Nación. While at La Nación, she briefly published her own magazine. Years as a journalist: 22 Awards and distinctions: "Favored Daughter" of the city of Granados, Guatemala, in 1975. Civic activities: In 1979 founded the first Human Rights Commission in Guatemala. Was active in the Revolutionary Party. Hobbies: Writing was her favorite leisure activity. Her reading preferences were classic novels. She liked aerobic exercise. She wrote a book, "At 12:15, the Sun," about an attack on her in 1979. In the prologue, she dedicated the book to "My dear murderer."