Montserrat Arévalo Alvarado
Defense of human rights
THE FACTS – On March 13, 2020, defender Montserrat Arévalo posted a denunciation in Facebook that has been shared more than four thousand times regarding overcrowding and the lack of hygiene for persons held in quarantine during the pandemic provoked by COVID-19.
As a result, the defender has received commentaries marked by mockery, rejection and hatred in the same network. She has also received private messages containing hate speech, intimidation and threats, including misogynous insults and derision of her feminist activism.
Most of the messages include references to President Nayib Bukele, suggesting or demanding that the defender observe silence and refrain from questioning the measures implemented by the government.
We of IM-Defensoras and the Salvadoran Network of Women Human Rights Defenders uphold the right of defenders to free expression that is necessary in order to inform and alert the general public to cases in which security measures are inadequate and citizens’ human rights are being violated, especially in view of the emergency decrees and measures restricting mobility approved by the Legislative Assembly last March 14.
Thus, we condemn the aggression perpetrated against Montserrat Arévalo and demand that the Salvadoran government protect the defender, granting all necessary guarantees to ensure that her work in defense of human rights is not limited by such attacks.