January 19, 2016

Urgent Action Update: Social Leader Arbitrarily Detained For Over A Year (Argentina: UA 13/16)

The social leader Milagro Sala has been arbitrarily detained since 16 January. The Argentine government has not complied with the UN decision ordering her immediate release.
On 14 December 2015 the governor of Jujuy Province, Gerardo Morales, filed a complaint against the social leader Milagro Sala and the Network of Social Organizations for protesting in front of the offices of Jujuy province’s Executive Power. Milagro Sala was then detained on 16 January 2016. Despite her release being ordered in this case, further criminal proceedings were then initiated against her in order to keep her in detention. To date, Milagro Sala remains in detention.
In February 2016, Amnesty International, together with other organizations, submitted a complaint to the United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detention and an application for precautionary measures to the Inter-American Court of Human Rights (IACHR) in favour of Milagro Sala. On 27 October, the Working Group determined that “the detention of Milagro Sala is arbitrary” and requested that “the government of the Argentine Republic release her immediately”. The Working Group maintained that there were various interlinked “consecutive allegations” at the time to ensure that that she would remain indefinitely detained, and concluded that the Argentine government prevented Milagro Sala from exercising the right to defence in a situation where the independence of the judiciary was violated. Furthermore, having analyzed the legal grounds on which Milagro Sala is detained, the Group concluded that there were no legal elements that justified her detention.
On 3 November 2016, the IACHR issued a request for information to the government to establish what action is being taken to comply with the Working Group’s decision. The IACHR published a statement expressing concern about the prolonged pre-trial detention of Milagro Sala and urging the government to “take urgent action to respond to the recommendations issued by the Working Group” and release her immediately. However, she has now been detained for over a year and the government continues to violate Milagro Sala’s human rights by arbitrarily detaining her.
Write a letter, send an email, call, fax or tweet:
  • Calling on the authorities to comply with the decision of the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention, and to order the immediate release of Milagro Sala, guaranteeing her physical integrity;
  • Urging them to end the persecution of Milagro Sala and other social organizations.
Contact these two officials by 16 March, 2017:
Minister of Foreign Affairs and Culture
Susana Malcorra
Esmeralda 1212
Buenos Aires, Argentina
Fax: +54 (11) 4819-7000
Salutation: Dear Chancellor / Sra.
Ambassador Martin Lousteau
Embassy of Argentina
1600 New Hampshire Ave, NW, Washington DC 20009
Phone: (202) 238-6400 -OR- (202) 238-6401 I  Fax: (202) 332-3171 
Salutation: Dear Ambassador